Pilgrim Theatre

658 Washington Street,
Boston, MA 02116

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Olympia Theatre exterior with the nearby Gayety Theatre across the street

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened as Gordon’s Olympia Theatre on May 6, 1912 with photoplays and vaudeville. It later became a second-run movie theatre and in its last few years of operation showed sexploitation films. It was near the E.M. Loew’s Center Theatre and the Stuart Theatre on the same side of Washington Street.

It was demolished in 1996

Contributed by Gerald A. DeLuca

Recent comments (view all 107 comments)

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on May 30, 2011 at 12:00 am

This theatre is currently mapped on the wrong Washington Street (Brighton, instead of downtown Boston), miles from where it belongs.

William on August 29, 2011 at 11:08 pm

The zip code needs to change to 02201.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 1, 2011 at 10:54 am

The January 15, 1913, issue of The American Architect had a brief article titled “Escalators for Theaters” which was illustrated by a photo of the escalator in Gordon’s Olympia Theatre. Google Books scan here.

rivest266 on May 12, 2013 at 2:15 pm

Grand opening ad from November 16th, 1913 has been uploaded here.

alberwi on August 28, 2013 at 3:22 pm

rivest266: That ad is for the Olympia Theatre in Scollay Square, not the Olympia on Washington Street that later became known as the Pilgrim.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on August 28, 2013 at 6:24 pm

alberwi is correct: the opening day ad is for the Scollay Square Olympia, not this theater. Back when they were in operation, they were known as the “Washington Street Olympia” and the “Scollay Square Olympia”; later the “Pilgrim” and the “Scollay Square”. Although similar in size and both run by Nathan Gordon, they were not identical twins. The Scollay Square Theatre closed long before the Pilgrim.

Willburg145 on April 26, 2017 at 4:51 pm

Are all the theatres in the picture gone?

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on April 26, 2017 at 5:01 pm

The Olympia (Pilgrim) and Gayety have been demolished and replaced by residential buildings. The RKO Boston (at right, behind the Olympia) is sitting vacant. The Paramount (in far background, at the bend of Washington Street) was rebuilt and reopened by Emerson College.

DavidZornig on April 30, 2017 at 2:01 am

1974 photo added credit Spencer Grant.

DavidZornig on May 31, 2017 at 2:13 pm

Summer 1956 photo added courtesy of the Dirty Old Boston Facebook page. Pilgrim blade sign in the background.

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