Illinois Theatre

1600 2nd Avenue,
Rock Island, IL 61201

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The Illinois Theatre opened on December 26, 1901. It operated successfully as a live theater for several years, hosting travelling stage companies, vaudeville, musical performances and sporting events. By 1916, it had become a movie house.

The theater was remodeled and updated in 1920, but was open only intermittently for the next several years. In 1929, the interior of the structure was largely gutted for conversion to a Montgomery Ward department store.

In its later years, the building was occupied by a furniture store, until 2005, when it was taken over by the Quad Cities YWCA. Today, the ground floor is occupied by a used clothing store run by the organization.

Contributed by Joe Vogel

Recent comments (view all 1 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 11, 2011 at 12:41 am

Google Maps puts its pin at the corner of 2nd Avenue and 17th Street. The Illinois Theatre was actually a block west, at the southeast corner of 2nd Avenue and 16th Street. Street View has been set to the proper location. The theater was in the three-story building diagonally across the intersection.

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