Port Chicago Theatre

301 Main Street,
Port Chicago, CA 94520

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1944 disaster images with caption

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Port Chicago is mostly known today for being the site of a devastating explosion on July 14, 1944 at a pier where ammunition was being loaded aboard ships heading to the war in the Pacific. 320 sailors and civilians, mostly African-Americans, were killed, and over 400 injured.

The explosion rocked the entire town, and caused heavy damage, including the partial collapse of the Port Chicago Theatre. The theater was later rebuilt and reopened and continued to operate for a number of years.

In 1968, the federal government purchased the town of Port Chicago, which was completely razed to create a "safety zone" around the weapons station loading docks.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on June 29, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Here’s a 1944 trade report on the disaster: boxofficemagazine

Prof David Ducay
Prof David Ducay on December 1, 2013 at 6:58 pm

The Port Chicago Theatre also went by the names Blue Star Theatre and the Angeles Theatre.

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