Congress Theatre

4023 Olive Street,
St. Louis, MO 63108

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Congress Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

One of the larger neighborhood theatres to be built by Franchon & Marco, the Congress Theatre was just east of the Grand White Way where all the big movie palaces were. This was a beautiful theatre with a very impressive front and very large marquee. The inside was very ornate and had a fairly large balcony.

The thing that made its interior so different from the other ornate theatre is that everything was done in green. The curtains, the seating, the carpet and all the wall decorations. The theatre walls were lined with ornate wall sconces that dimmed at the start of the feature. A large chandelier in the main auditorium really lit the theatre up before and after the movie. One of the largest concession stands of any of the neighborhood theatres.

Contributed by Charles Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

JAlex
JAlex on May 7, 2004 at 11:48 pm

Located at the intersection of Olive & Sarah, the Congress was built in 1911 and opened as the OLIVE Theatre.

In 1913 theatre presented legitimate drama, was renamed the MARGUERITE CLARK.

In 1915 theatre became the CONGRESS.

JamesGrebe
JamesGrebe on February 21, 2005 at 5:24 pm

There was a Msasonic type organization occupying the buiolding a few years ago. I was able to go in to see . Just a big hall now.
JamesGrebe

JAlex
JAlex on October 22, 2009 at 3:53 pm

As noted once before, the theatre was built in 1911 as the Olive and operated under the same management as the Delmar Theatre. In 1913 it was renamed the Marguerite Clark (the stage & screen actress who lived from 1883 to 1940). In 1915 the theatre became a full-time film house, owned by the Greek Consul in St. Louis A. M. E. Pasmezoglu who operated a number of film theatres in the community.
In 1925, theatre was leased to St. Louis Amusement who operated the theatre until 1945. In that year, theatre came under the wing of Joe Litvag, who operated until closure in July 1954.

Capacity of the house originally was 1096, later reduced to 898.

After closure as a theatre, the structure was used as a church and was eventually demolished.

alex_greekx
alex_greekx on April 20, 2013 at 2:09 pm

Do you know where I can find more info re the early greek movie/theatre owners in St Louis (like Pasmezoglou)?

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