Saenger Theatre

1209 Walnut Street,
Vicksburg, MS 39183

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Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 18, 2013 at 12:57 pm

I’ve been trying to follow the lead from abarry33’s earlier comment saying that the Saneger Theatre was once called the Walnut Theatre. I’ve come across a Walnut Street Theatre on a list of historic buildings in Vicksburg, and it was listed at 1207 Walnut Street. This house was listed int he 1899-1900 Cahn guide as a 1,200-seat, ground floor theater. In two later editions of the guide it was listed with a capacity of 1,400.

There is a photo of the Walnut Street Theatre on this page of the April, 1907, issue of The Theatre. The building’s facade appears to be about the same size and shape as the Saenger, but it has lots of windows. I’ve found only one source stating specifically that the Walnut Street Theatre was renamed the Saenger, in a July 25, 2010, feature article in The Vicksburg Post, in which 96 year old Evelyn White recalls being in a play at the Walnut Street Theatre before it was renamed.

I think that the Saenger Theatre probably was the Walnut Street Theatre, with either a remodeled front or with more extensive reconstruction, but I’m unable to account for the drastic reduction in seating capacity between the 1900s and 1950.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on November 16, 2008 at 8:34 pm

In 1950 the Saenger Theater had 450 seats.

kencmcintyre on April 19, 2008 at 8:51 pm

The Saenger is on the right in this 1936 photo:

abarry33 on February 21, 2007 at 8:11 pm

The Saenger was originally known as The Walnut. The organ
was a 2 manual 8 rank Robert Morton. The organist was
Maimo Minter.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on December 21, 2004 at 12:15 pm

The exact address for this theater was:
1209 Walnut St
Vicksburg, MS 39183

There are alot of articles and photos from the Vicksburg Post that are in Adobe format. If you don’t have the Adobe reader installed on your computer, don’t click the link.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on December 21, 2004 at 9:35 am

I found an old Vicksburg article about the tornado and the address given for the Saenger Theatre was 1209 Walnut St. This was a real tragedy. The tornado struck on Dec. 5,1953. Five children died when the balcony in this theater collapsed. There was a childrens birthday party being held there at the time and the movie playing for the adults was “Botany Bay” starring Alan Ladd.