Maryland Theater

855 E. 63rd Street,
Chicago, IL 60637

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Showing 16 comments

WayOutWardell on February 4, 2014 at 3:04 pm

A book about the Jackson Park Theater antitrust case lists the Maryland as opened in 1918 and acquired by B&K in 1928, showing films 9 weeks after the first-run in the Loop.

RiisPark on March 12, 2013 at 5:56 pm

I just posted above some photos I took around 1980

KenC on April 19, 2010 at 12:00 am

As noted above, you can see the Maryland Theatre in the movie “MONKEY HUSTLE”. 39 minutes and 38 seconds into the film, the box office, the glass entrance doors,a number of poster cases(J.D.’S REVENGE is on display), and many light bulbs under the marquee can be seen in a great night scene. See it for free at the Internet Movie Database or Hulu.

brianlewis on September 16, 2008 at 11:52 am

Thanks….i had no luck searching the archive woth my lack of skills
I’ll keep trying….where there’s a will………..

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on September 12, 2008 at 9:06 pm

Yes, they do have my photos. But they also have others. I no longer have copies myself. When I was taking photos there were no digital cameras. I got sick of storing Kodak slides as I got older and gave everything to THS. I also figured the collection did more good there than in my basement.

Seriously, give them a call. The prints don’t cost much, and if you can’t make it to the archive they will send you copies for examination with a watermark before you buy.

brianlewis on September 9, 2008 at 9:37 am

Are these these the photos that you shot in the late 80’s ?
If so, please post them here on the site, or provide a link.
Its kinda difficult to buy photos sight unseen. Please post!

thanks “LTS”

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on September 8, 2008 at 7:19 pm

For Maryland pics contact the Theatre Historical Society. Web address:

The web site has email and phone contacts. I know for a fact that they have some photos of this building & they would be happy to sell you copies at a very reasonable price.

GrandMogul on March 29, 2007 at 12:49 pm

Chicago Tribune, Tuesday, February 25, 1964, s. 1, p. 22, c. 2:
Tower Ticker, by Herb Lyon

“… .In a late rush, B&K’s State Lake, Maryland and now Uptown are sold out for tonight’s Liston-Clay theater TV episode. The Marbro has seats … .”

brianlewis on March 14, 2007 at 8:17 am

If anyone can find any pix of the Maryland—-please help …I was hoping to see something if possible…..thanks in advance for any help provided

KenC on July 3, 2006 at 6:16 pm

Hi chicagomovieman- I will get a copy of “MONKEY HUSTLE” ; the views of east 63rd street will be worth it. I was never in the Maryland- but remember seeing it from the ‘L’ train on my way to 63rd- Stony. After visiting the Museum of Science and Industry, in the 60s, we would walk back to the CTA and, instead of boarding at Stony Island,walk west on 63rd. I had to get a close up view of the theatres I had passed from above. My most vivid memory is of the Lex, a small theatre about two blocks east of the Maryland. You’re so right, the area was bustling! Many people on the street; lines at the boxoffice windows (at least on Saturday/Sunday afternoons).Never had the time to venture inside; I regret it now. Since I was born and raised on the north side of Chicago, my knowledge of south side theatres is very limited. Never been to the Rhodes or Hamilton.

brianlewis on June 19, 2006 at 7:45 pm

Ebert used to be so funny. I used to read Ebert, Kehr,and Siskel with a passion back in those days. Get a copy of “Monkey Hustle."
You’ll see some priceless footage of 63rd street, c. 1975

The Woodlawn Org (TWO) is still open, their offices are now located near stoney Island on the north side of 63rd street.

I think the Maryland theatre was open until 1977. What was up that fence in front of the screen? Did you ever visit the Rhodes and the Hamilton ?

KenC on June 19, 2006 at 2:56 pm

The Maryland theatre was open at least through April 1975. From the Chicago Tribune, Friday April 11, 1975: TWO MARYLAND “TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE” “RETURN OF THE DRAGON”. This double feature was also playing at the Ramova, Parkway, and many other Chicago theatres. The TWO was The Woodlawn Organization. I remember reading in 1969 (1970?) that the Woodlawn Organization, a civil rights community group that, among other things, battled the University of Chicago re: acquiring land and demolition, took over operation of the Maryland. They tried showing classy fare- John Schlesinger’s “SUNDAY, BLOODY SUNDAY” played here in 1971 (‘72?). However, the Maryland soon went to action, horror, and martial arts movies. Seeing the title “MONKEY HUSTLE” brought back memories of Roger Ebert’s review in 1976. I don’t think he cared much for the movie, but he did like his surroundings: Ebert: “MONKEY HUSTLE” is doing such good business…they had to open the Roosevelt’s balcony. I haven’t been up there in years. It’s a hell of a balcony"

brianlewis on June 18, 2006 at 8:23 pm

I also grew up on the South side of Chicago. 65th and King Drive. I used to walk to the Maryland theatre in the 70’s. I saw a lot of Pam Grier, Bruce Lee, and a lot of double features that seemed to feature the film “Sparkle”. For some reason, there was 3 foot chain link fence in front of the screen.

If you watch the film, “Monkey Hustle,” there is a shot of the Maryland theatre near the very end of the as the characters walk by Daley’s restaurant, Kamm and Nates Shoes, the old Maryland Professional Building….

The Maryland was a nice place to visit, because, at the time the neighborhood was productive and intresting. There were MANY stores and restaurants on 63rd and Cottage Grove in the 70’s.

npoleon06 on May 18, 2006 at 7:38 am

First, the Maryland theater did not close in ‘69, I grew up on 62nd and Drexel during the 60’s and the 70’s and so I walked to the Maryland. I was born in 1964 and know for a fact that I was in thier during the mid to late 70’s.

Second, the Maryland Theatre was the bomb.. I know, I know, they had rats as big as cats that ran across your feet, and your feet would always stick to the floor, BUT I saw some the greatest Karate movies ever there, like “Fists of Fury”, “The Chinese Connection” and my all time favorite karate flick “The Chinese Professionals” with Wang Yu the One Armed boxer!!

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on August 27, 2005 at 6:49 am

I photographed the Maryland in the late 80’s. By that time it had become an urban ruin. Boards had been torn off the main entrance and you could walk right in. Decided this was not in my best interest, as the building sat in the middle of a volatile neighborhood. Who knows what might have been waiting in that dark auditorium. The lobby was intact, despite being open to the elements. There was garbage everywhere though. Hard to imagine the lobby was once filled with happy patrons. An amazing example of how times change.

richardg on December 9, 2003 at 8:27 pm

I was lucky enough to see the inside of The Maryland during the late 1970’s. It was beautiful inside and ideal for live entertainment. Even the last row of seats was close to the stage making it a perfect place to see the many black recording artists who performed there. Unfortunately I never did. Several years after my initial visit to the Maryland, I returned to find vandals had ruined the entire theatre complex.