Osceola Theatre

256 St. Ann's Avenue,
Bronx, NY

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The Osceola opened in the 30s, located on St. Ann’s Avenue near 138th Street in the Mott Haven area of the Bronx and sat over 500. The building that once housed the theater today houses a supermarket.

Contributed by Bryan

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

trooperboots
trooperboots on December 31, 2004 at 1:22 am

My mom, who was raised in New York in the 1930s, sent me the following on this theater:

I remember in the late thirties “The Osceola” in the Bronx. I read that the place was named after a
famous Indian Chief. Probably, from one of the New England tribes. Algonquin?

My mom gave me a dime on Saturdays because I had been good. My favorite thing to do was to go to the movies. The ticket was nine cents for kids.

With the extra penny, I would buy caramels called “7 for a Penny”, (individually wrapped). I saw 3 movies, 5 cartoons, “News of the Day”, with Lowell Thomas, etc.

There was a matron, dressed in white, like a nurse, in case of any physical problems and ushers
to keep the kids in line. There was one drawback. The Elevated train would pass up above and was kinda noisy in the theater. Great memories.

jflundy
jflundy on December 11, 2007 at 6:36 pm

There is a nice color photo of the Osceola Theater circa 1943 on this website devoted to trolley photos. View link

The Third Avenue Railway car is passing the movie house heading toward 138th Street on St. Ann’s Avenue which is in the Bronx, not Manhattan as the photo label mistakenly states.

The marquee attraction board is hard to read. Anyone have an idea what is playing ?

jflundy
jflundy on December 11, 2007 at 6:41 pm

I have just enhanced the photo and the marquee reads as follows:

“Happy Landing”
with Don Ameche and
“The Battle of Moscow”

jflundy
jflundy on December 12, 2007 at 9:24 am

Osceola was the name of a Seminole War Chief of great renown. He lead a group of warriors resisting the theft of the tribal home land and the deportation of his people to the west during the Second Seminole War. He died in 1838.

I believe the Osceola Theater may date to the early 1920’s or possibly before.

jflundy
jflundy on December 12, 2007 at 11:56 am

Photo mentioned above, correction of display on marquee. “Happy Landing” is incorrect, should be “Happy Land”, a 1943 release with Don Ameche, Harry Carey, Francis Dee, a war propaganda movie.

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