Palm Theatre

1868 Frankford Avenue,
Philadelphia, PA 19125

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Built in 1887 as a drama/vaudeville theatre with seating for 1,902, the Palm Theatre was on the corner of Frankford Street and Norris Street.

It was remodeled in 1919 by architect Reuben Beard. It may have been operated by the Handle & Rovner chain around 1930 and seems to have shown movies until about 1950. After closure it became a used furniture store. Demolished in 1969 and replaced by a car wash.

Contributed by RickB

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 31, 2010 at 8:27 pm

Here is a demolition photo in May 1969, from Temple U:
http://tinyurl.com/yg89r5f

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on February 2, 2010 at 9:00 pm

Here is an exterior photo shortly before the demolition:
http://tinyurl.com/yz4lz6d

AndrewBarrett
AndrewBarrett on September 22, 2014 at 7:04 pm

Thanks for all of the info on this theatre. It looks like it was a nice building, a shame it got pulled down, but that’s the way it goes. Thanks for the interior and exterior photos, too, they ought to be added to this page with the permission of Temple University Libraries.

AndrewBarrett
AndrewBarrett on September 22, 2014 at 7:22 pm

According to “The Encyclopedia of the American Theatre Organ” by David Junchen, pg. 630, the “Palm Theatre” in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, had a Seeburg-Smith theatre pipe organ installed in 1918.

The instrument’s size (# of manuals and # of ranks) is not listed in the book, meaning it was not known at the time of publication.

However, the organ had a blower, number F447, which was 1 and ½ horsepower and put out 10" of static wind pressure, and again, the organ had the Seeburg-Smith nameplate, meaning it was built in the Seeburg factory in Chicago, under Smith’s supervision.

Does anybody know what happened to this organ, or where it is today? Thanks!

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