Monte Theatre

E. Main Street,
Montezuma, IA 50171

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Small town county seat theatre located in Montezuma, Iowa. It was operating prior to 1941, and continued until closure in 1957.

Contributed by John Hicks

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 21, 2010 at 3:26 pm

John,could you have the city misspelled? I have found a Monticello, Iowa with a MONTE THEATRE that was owned by IOWA UNITED THEATRES 1123 High Street.Des Monies.This is from a 1956 Motion Picture Almanac.
I hope this helps you if the city was just misspelled.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on May 22, 2010 at 1:52 am

Boxoffice of January 31, 1953, reporting on a fire that had gutted the Monte Theatre, said the house had been built 16 years before by John Davis, and had been extensively remodeled as recently as 1951. At the time of the fire the Monte was being operated by the widowed Mrs. Davis and her daughter and son-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Thurber. The 500-seat theater was the only movie house in town. The March 21 issue of Boxoffice said that local citizens were working to help with the repairs, and the Jaycees were donating their efforts to repair or replace the damaged seats.

The December 29, 1956, issue of Boxoffice said that the Monte Theatre would be in operation only four days a week during the winter. Then on May 5, 1958, Boxoffice said that Mrs. Joe Thurber had closed the Monte Theater after three years of declining business. Finally. Boxoffice of June 12, 1961, reported that Kathryn Davis had sold the Monte Theatre building to F.R. “Bob” Brownell, who planned to remodel it for his business. The item didn’t say what sort of business Brownell Industries was in, but today the company is a purveyor of small arms supplies, as can be seen at their web site.

The Monte’s seats survived the theater and, according to Boxoffice of September 18, 1961, were purchased by the Toledo Community Theatre Guild and installed in the Wieting Theatre, then undrgoing renovation in Toledo, Iowa. The Wieting Theatre is still in operation, but I don’t know if it still sports the Monte’s old seats. If it does, it’s about time they replaced them.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 22, 2010 at 5:39 am

Thanks Chuck1231 and Joe.I just thought the names sounded real close to the same city.I will keep checking my 1956 Almanac,maybe i can locate the owners for John.

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on May 23, 2010 at 7:40 pm

Chuck1231, When you click on the map it gives you the whole United States, so that Court House Square address has to go. 300 block of East Main Street is good start, but any chance you can come up with the exact address. It looks like the entire block is old buildings, so I think the theater is still standing.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on May 28, 2010 at 11:50 am

Any photos of the MONTE THEATRE out there whereever it was located.

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