Strand Theatre

18 Elm Street,
Southbridge, MA 01550

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The Strand Theatre in the center of Southbridge was leveled many decades ago. Any memories of it would be appreciated.

Contributed by Gerald A. DeLuca

Recent comments (view all 14 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 17, 2007 at 8:49 pm

Here are two photos from 1920 and 1927, respectively. The latter photo is referenced in the preceding post:
http://tinyurl.com/2wl4cz
http://tinyurl.com/2lqn3e

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 17, 2007 at 9:34 pm

The 1920 and 1927 photos appear to show the same building, so I would think it was constructed before 1926. There may have been a name change from Blanchard to Strand sometime after the opening. It was the Strand in 1927, when the fire occurred.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 17, 2007 at 9:35 pm

I’ve been down that path before. A lot of these theaters that are “destroyed” are rehabbed and put back to work.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 17, 2007 at 9:36 pm

The Blanchard is noted in the interior photo to be on the southwest corner of Main and Elm Streets. I believe that is the location of the Strand as well.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 17, 2007 at 9:46 pm

I agree. I’ve made the same assertion based on newspaper accounts of fires only to find out later that the theater was rebuilt and demolished years later.

atmos
atmos on November 18, 2007 at 12:28 pm

The building was erected in 1916 by the Blanchard brothers for use as a dance hall and roller skating rink.Originally known as The Hippodrome it was also used for vaudeville and converted into a cinema in 1926.This information from this website – www.dickwhitney.net/SbdgeStrandIsClosed.htm

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on February 15, 2008 at 7:34 pm

The 2 photos, from 1920 and 1927, posted by Ken Mc on Nov 17 2007 are of the same building, from 2 different vantage points. The theatre entrance bears no resemblance at all to the Strand’s entrance in the 1941 MGM photo and Lost’s photo of Oct 28 2005. The newer entrance is a small 2-story building with a store on the left and the theatre lobby on the right. After the 1927 fire, were they able to salvage the auditorium, or was the entire theatre complex of new construction ? Was the Strand which opened in 1926 a reworking of the Blanchard Theatre; then it was burned out in 1927? Then the Strand was rebuilt with a new entrance, or was the entire post-fire Strand Theatre a new building ??

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on November 10, 2010 at 7:37 pm

The 1927 Film Daily Yearbook lists 3 movie venues for Southbridge: the Plaza Theater, 600 seats; the Phelps Theatre, 725 seats; and Blanchard’s Theatre, 876 seats.

Cinerama
Cinerama on June 13, 2014 at 6:34 pm

I lived in Southbridge on Mechanic Street till 1961 and use to walk to a movie theatre. It might have been this one.

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