Strand Theatre

12905 Philadelphia Street,
Whittier, CA 90601

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The Whittier News noted the opening of the Strand Theatre on August 2, 1922. The Oxnard Daily Courier reported in September of 1922 that the current three managers, who had leased the building in May, were suing the previous manager, who had sold them the business and equipment. On December 29, the Courier reported the dispute was settled in favor of the defendant, Mark Hansen, an Oxnard theater man.

The management of the Strand Theatre, who also operated the Scenic Theater, ran it at least until 1930 and it was listed in the Film Daily Yearbook of 1927 with 480 seats. Although the entrance was on Philadelphia Street, according to the Sanborn Maps, the auditorium was in back of the four shops. The entrance to the theater would be about where Just Deadly, a tattoo parlor, is located today. The building to its left, another early twentieth-century building, was the IOOF lodge hall.

Contributed by Ron Pierce

Recent comments (view all 1 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 31, 2013 at 7:32 pm

The L.A. County Assessor gives a construction year of 1902 and an effective build year of 1950 for the 10,766 sq. ft. building on this lot. Google’s camera car went up the alley alongside the building, and there is a parking lot behind it, so you can get a good view of the section that once housed the Strand Theatre’s auditorium.

It is currently part of the Marco Polo Pizza parlor, which has its main entrance on Philadelphia Street, but has another door facing the parking lot off of Comstock Avenue. The structure doesn’t look like it would have a ceiling high enough for a movie theater. Perhaps it was lowered as part of the 1950 alterations.

Although the Assessor’s office says the entire building was built in 1902, I suspect that the part with the auditorium might have been a later addition, and the Assessor’s office just lost track of the paperwork for it.

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