Grand Theatre

403 East 2nd Street,
Muscatine, IA 52761

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The Grand Theatre building dates back to at least 1901 when it was known as the Grand Opera House. The Grand Theatre is listed as closed in 1940.

Contributed by Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on October 31, 2008 at 12:50 pm

Here is a photo of the Grand Opera House in 1901.

This is a photo of the Grand Opera House in 1910.

Here is a 1930 photo of the Grand Theater.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on October 31, 2008 at 3:20 pm

According to a history page for the Trinity Episcopal Church in Muscatine, Iowa: In 1945, the neighboring Grand Opera House burned to the ground, but Trinity’s slate roof prevented it from suffering a similar fate. The status should be demolished.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 22, 2009 at 9:47 pm

Muscatine’s Grand and Palace Theatres were sold by Midland Theatres to Fox West Coast Theatres in 1929, according to an item in Movie Age, November 2 that year. Both were among the Muscatine theaters operated at one time by Ludy Bosten, an exhibitor in the town from 1912 into the 1960s, according to an article about his career in the April 9, 1962, issue of Boxoffice Magazine.

The Grand Theatre’s demise was recorded by a brief item in the March 17, 1945, issue of Boxoffice, which said that the house had been destroyed by a fire the previous week.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 13, 2013 at 11:29 am

According to a document prepared for the NRHP covering the history of Iowa opera houses from 1835 to 1940, the Grand Opera House in Muscatine was one of two Iowa houses designed by a St. Louis architect named George Johnston. He also designed the Midland Theatre in Fort Dodge, built in 1900. I’ve been unable to find any other information about George Johnston on the Internet.

As the earlier photo links are all dead, here are some photos of the Grand Opera House:

Exterior, October, 1901, which was probably around the time it opened.

Auditorium, around 1905.

A street scene with the Grand at right, taken in 1911.

Another exterior view from around 1910.

An exterior view from 1930.

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