Roxy Theatre

126 E. 4th Street,
Carthage, MO 64836

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Delphus is the far left building in this pic

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Royal Theatre was opened by 1926. It was a small one screen theatre which replaced the original adjacent Delphus Theatre in August 1934. In 1949 it was renamed Roxy Theatre. It was open through 1964. It was destroyed in a fire on November 3, 1972.

Contributed by Jack Moran

Recent comments (view all 30 comments)

ldc402000 on April 22, 2015 at 7:49 pm

I shared this info with the Powers Museum of Carthage, Missouri.

ldc402000 on April 23, 2015 at 7:20 am

check this out Joe Vogel

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 23, 2015 at 1:53 pm

I see that the ad for the Photoplay spells the co-owner’s name McDurmeit. As the standard spelling of that surname is McDermeit, I had thought that MPW might have made a typo, but a local ad with that spelling suggests that he did use a variant spelling of his name. Other sources do use McDermeit, though, including an item in the September 25, 1915, issue of The Billboard which said that Ben and Porter Blackford had bought the Photoplay Theatre in Carthage from James A. McDermeit.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 24, 2015 at 3:52 am

As the Roxy probably was the same house as the earlier Delphus Theatre, I’ll put this item from The Nickelodeon of May, 1909, here:

“Carthage, Mo. — I. P. Williams of this city and C. O. Williams of Webb City, owners of the Delphos [sic] Theater here, will conduct a moving picture theater at the corner of Fourth and Lincoln.”
I believe Fourth and Lincoln was the location of the Grand Opera House, so the Williamses might have been leasing the Opera House for showing movies.

This earlier comment by jsheehy454 cites a 1914 death certificate mentioning the Hippodrome Theatre at Fourth and Lincoln, so I think Hippodrome might have been an aka for the Grand Opera House.

The 1913 Airdome built behind the Delphus Theatre was to be called the Delphus Hippodrome, according to the MPW item I cited in this comment. That item names one of the operators of the Delphus as J. P. Williams (the J was most likely a typo that should have been an I.) It looks like Williams might have used the name Hippodrome at two different theaters in Carthage.

ldc402000 on April 24, 2015 at 8:33 am

You are right about the Grand Opera house. It is on the 1909 Sanborn map. I read that it burned at some time and is now a vacant lot.

ldc402000 on April 24, 2015 at 8:44 am

I found Israel P. “Put” Williams on His wifes name was Delphus Williams.

imaxman on April 24, 2015 at 12:14 pm

Thanks to all for the photos and comments. comparing google street view with some of the old photos taken on the streets it is easier to visualize where the theaters may have been. The one photo of the Roxy seems to have been showing the movie “Fall of the Roman Empire” 1964 from IMDB. I had found this same photo in the CHS school yearbook ad’s.

imaxman on April 26, 2015 at 11:11 am

Does anyone remember what the Roxy looked like inside?
Where was the snack bar, How many isles, etc.

ldc402000 on April 28, 2015 at 10:50 am

you went in the door after getting your ticket outside from the booth, it had a small snack bar with popcorn on the right side but have no memories of what the theater looked like inside except it was plain walls and always seemed dark.

OCRon on April 12, 2017 at 3:50 am

The Roxy can be listed AKA Royal Theatre, Delphus Theatre.

On June 10, 1934, the Joplin Globe reported Mr. and Mrs. Williams were remodeling the old Royal Theatre, situated next door to their Delphus Theatre. They planned to move the old Delphus into the Royal Theatre site.

The Williams opened the new 535-seat Delphus Theatre August 8, 1934, and the Globe reported ’the new theater is one door west of the old Delphus, now abandoned’.

According to the Joplin Globe, the Williams came to Carthage in 1906 and opened the old Delphus Theatre (about 1908). The Delphus was sold in 1949 and renamed the Roxy. The theater’s namesake, Delphus Williams passed away in 1955 and Israel Putman Williams in 1962.

Two news clips explaining the move are in the photo section, also a photo of the fire that destroyed the Roxy, November 3, 1972..

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