Temple Theatre

4842 North Jefferson Street,
Pulaski, NY 13142

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The Temple Theatre opened in February 1925 and operated to January 1939 when it was destroyed by fire. The Kallet Theatre was built at the same location opening on June 7, 1939.

Contributed by Ridgewood Ken

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 13, 2013 at 1:02 pm

The destruction of the Temple Theatre and Odd Fellows Temple at Pulaski by fire was reported in several regional newspapers. The January 23, 1939, editions of the Troy Times Record, the Schenectady Gazette, and The Saratogian of Saratoga Springs all carried brief items about the event, but the most extensive article was in the Oswego Palladium-Times (PDF here)

All the articles mentioned that the theater was in the IOOF Temple building. The April 15 and May 27 issue of The American Contractor carried items about the new IOOF Temple planned at Pulaski which was to include a movie theater. However, the project was not completed until 1925. The March 4 issue of the Jefferson County Journal said that the Temple Theatre was scheduled to open on the 6th of that month. Construction had taken several months, the newspaper reported.

The Contractor items attribute the design of the IOOF Temple and theater to architect William J. Townsend, but I’ve found no sources confirming that he retained the contract through the two year delay before construction began.

I’ve found no sources mentioning a Temple Theatre in Pulaski prior to this one, but there was a theatre called the Hohman Opera House (a couple of sources call it the Pulaski Theatre or the Pulaski Opera House) which was located next door to the site of the Temple. It was destroyed by fire in the 1930s, and when the Temple burned in 1939 Kallet bought the lot where the opera house had been. Newspapers reported that the new Kallet Theatre would have parking on one of the lots. The Kallet looks to have been a bit wider than the Temple, though, so the new building probably occupied part of the site of the opera house.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 13, 2013 at 2:30 pm

The conflation of the 1908 Hohman Opera House and the Temple Theatre, built next door to the Hohman in 1925, appears to be of fairly recent origin. I’ve found no instance of it on the Internet from earlier than 2008.

In any case, This PDF of the February 6, 1939, issue of the Oswego Palladium-Times should clear up the confusion. An article headed “Theater Chain Obtains Second Pulaski Block” says that Kallet had bought the site of the Hohman Opera House/Pulaski Theatre (which had burned in 1934) adjacent to the site of their recently burned Temple Theatre. These were definitely two different buildings. The Kallet Theatre built in 1939 apparently occupied the site of the Temple Theatre (1925-1939) and part of the site of the Hohman Opera House Block (1908-1934.)

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