Dixie Theatre

217 E. Broad Street,
Wrens, GA 30833

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Dixie Theatre

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Opened prior to 1941, the Dixie Theatre was owned in the early-1950’s by Bill and Nan Griffin, two locals who also ran the Columbia Theatre in Harlem about twelve miles away. Projectionist Don Sullivan remembered in a Columbia News-Times interview how he would work both theatres along with Phil Hoffman.

With more nicer screens popping up in nearby Augusta along with television the Dixie Theatre called it quits in the 1960’s when a lot of screens went dark. "I saw some of the best movies ever made" Hoffman stated. The Dixie Theatre building was still standing last time I drove through having been an insurance office for years. Wrens is located in a much poorer county than Harlem and I wouldn’t expect the locals would try to reopen that theatre, but who knows.

Contributed by MikeRogers

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 10, 2010 at 2:56 pm

Thanks CT for getting the name.I heard Dixie theatre but wasn’t 100% sure and didn’t want to get it wrong.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 11, 2010 at 12:15 am

Wrens had two theaters called the Dixie. Here’s an item from Boxoffice of April 24, 1948: “Construction of the new Dixie Theatre, a 550-seater, is underway here. Mrs. Louis Williams, manager, said the project would cost about $40,000. The house will seat 350 on the main floor and 200 in the balcony. The present Dixie Theatre, opened 12 years ago, seats 215.”

The very next issue of Boxoffice, May 1, has additional, but somewhat belated, news from Wrens: “The Dixie Theatre was damaged by fire the morning of April 8. Several thousands of dollars damage was done to the screen and sound equipment. The Dixie is owned by Mrs. Violet Edwards and managed by Mrs. Louise Williams.”

Given the timing of the two articles, the phrasing of the first, and the lack of detail in both, I can’t tell if the new Dixie was a rebuilding of the original theater after the fire, or if its construction had been begun before the fire at a different location. I’ve found no other Boxoffice items that would clear up the mystery. Maybe somebody from the area knows.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 11, 2010 at 3:29 pm

Thanks Joe,for the info.I wouldn’t expect anyone from that area to comment.I can’t get the folks that have worked on the Columbia theatre in Harlem,Ga.to take interest in Cinema Treasures,they raised money to put a new marquee on the Columbia theatre,cleaned it out,but when I told them about this wonderful Cinema Treasures they just clammed up.Country folks I guess.

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