Loew's Fulton Theatre

1283 Fulton Street,
Brooklyn, NY 11216

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This elegant theatre in the area now known as Bedford-Stuyvesant first opened as the Fulton in September, 1908, presenting stage plays and vaudeville. In 1915, Marcus Loew purchased it for his burgeoning circuit, dropped plays and added movies to the programs. Loew’s Fulton Theatre was so successful that by 1927, the company had taken over two more theatres in the neighborhood, the Brevoort and the Bedford.

With the arrival of the Depression, that proved at least one too many, so the Fulton Theatre, being the oldest and most outmoded, was closed in 1930.

Contributed by Warren G. Harris

Recent comments (view all 26 comments)

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on July 14, 2006 at 6:18 am

Great work, Warren. Looks like our suspected existing building on Fulton did not house the former entrance foyer and lobby for this theater. In fact, it would seem that the lot now occupied by the bank is where the theater was situated. At first blush, the architectural image posted by Warren looks like it had a bit more frontage on Fulton than the Bank does, but looking at the aerial local.live image posted above (and comparing the scale of pedestrians on the sidewalk) the footprints of both buildings are probably more or less identical.

Knowing now what the facade of the Fulton looked like, it appears that one can make out the building in Warren’s previous photo looking down the elevated tracks as the light colored structure with a slightly lower roof line than its neighbors that pokes up just about where the train station’s shedding ends. What’s curious about that particular photo is how high up the theater’s loft wall and water tanks towered over the block! Unless the tanks and the painted sign were on a taller adjacent building to the rear? Are you guys seeing it the same way as I am?

Bway
Bway on July 14, 2006 at 7:29 am

Good work Warren, at least that puts this to rest.
Notice also that in your photo, which was definitely taken in the 1910’s (as that is when the Fulton el was strengthened and widened), that the theater was in fact still there as Ed mentioned where the bank is now, next to the building that we originally thought was the lobby:

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By the time the 1930’s came around, the Fulton Theater was gone, and the bank was there (which is a little lower than the theater facade) in the photo I found, taken from the similar angle:

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Ken Roe
Ken Roe on July 14, 2006 at 7:37 am

Thanks Warren, Bway, EdSolero & Lost Memory; We can now surely say this investigation is over and get the Status changed to Closed/Demolished.

Bway
Bway on July 14, 2006 at 9:40 am

Iterestingly, the sketcher of the sketch that warren posted of the Fulton Theater’s facade forgot one important thing! if that was from 1908, they forgot to “draw” that the building was obliterated by the Fulton Elevated, as the Fulton Elevated was built in the 1880’s or 1890’s, so it was there already when the theater was built. But that’s nothing new, I have seen photos of the Loew’s Valencia in sketches in which they “forgot” to draw in that it too was obliterated by the el in front of it. I have even seen photos of the Valencia, RKO Bushwick, etc where they have actually airbrushed the elevated sturcture out of photos!

jflundy
jflundy on August 24, 2007 at 7:46 pm

During 1950 and 1951,I often took the Nostrand Avenue trolley from the Myrtle Avenue EL stop at Nostrand Avenue south to its end at Avenue U, I recall seeing a theater on Fulton Street to the east side of Nostrand, on the south side of Fulton, several stores down. The marquee attraction board was quite high but no name was on it that I can recall. The policy was to show 3 and some times four features, always old movies, action, war or westerns. I always looked to see what was playing.

The Fulton Street EL was torn down in 1941.

Bway
Bway on April 30, 2009 at 10:31 am

It looked like it was a pretty imposing building. Too bad it was demolished.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on February 19, 2010 at 2:41 pm

First I have heard of this Loews.

Bedford
Bedford on August 26, 2013 at 1:46 pm

The theatre was opposite the building shown. The building shown was the Brevort Savings Bank, 2nd building. The original Brevoort Savings Bank building was around the corner (THE S.W CORNER of Macon and Nostrand). The Fulton Theatre was on the south side of Fulton street, facing the bank.

Bway
Bway on August 27, 2013 at 9:38 am

That’s not correct. The theater was at 1283 Fulton St, the old bank building, as well as all the buildings on that side of the street are odd numbers also.

johndereszewski
johndereszewski on August 22, 2014 at 12:18 pm

The wonderful Montrose Morris of the Brownstoner has a fine article that appears in today’s edition. It is worth checking out.

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