Princess Theatre

408 E. Commercial Street,
Springfield, MO 65803

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Princess - Springfield, MO

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This downtown theatre started with silent movies and then moved on to the talkies. It was a second run double feature thetare. It was a small narrow theatre with a small screen. It opened in 1911 and closed in 1940.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

Antiquarius
Antiquarius on February 14, 2010 at 7:30 pm

This theatre should be listed as closed/demolished. I used the Springfield-Greene County website and pulled up the Sanborn Fire Insurance Map for Commerical Street at this address. Springfield addresses went through a change in the late 1940s, and it can be difficult to pin down where things were. However, the fire insurance map shows the theatre, including the fact that it had a balcony. This is also the same place where the Princess Theatre was. I am not certain if it is the same building or not, but the site is the same one. I then pulled up the address from the county assessor page, and there is a vacant lot there. The two buildings surounding the old theatre are there, but the theatre itself is gone.

booley
booley on April 20, 2015 at 11:03 am

The Princess theater was located on the north side of Commercial Street a block or so west of the footbridge over the railroad yards that is still there. I am a native of Springfield and the theater was open as long I remember in the 1930s and up until after World War II. It was a third-run theater, but after the war was remodeled, renamed the Kickapoo and showed first-run movies simultaneously with the Gillioz or Electric theaters in the central business district. I believe it was open all through the 1950s and was only closed after many theaters feel victim to TV.

booley
booley on April 20, 2015 at 11:04 am

My previous comment should read “fell victim.”

moviejs1944
moviejs1944 on April 6, 2018 at 4:59 am

A better address for the Princess/Kickapoo/4 Star is 307 E. Commercial.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 6, 2018 at 1:30 pm

The Princess operated in two locations, but if this web page is correct, neither was at the modern address 408 E. Commercial Street. The brief paragraph about the two Princesses appears to have been from an oral history (or perhaps was just awkwardly written, as the wording is a bit ambiguous), but it appears that the first Princess Theatre was at the second door east of Benton Avenue on the south side of Commercial Street, which would make its modern address 502 E. Commercial.

The first Princess was replaced by a new Princess in 1917, which must have been the one at 307 E. Commercial. That building appears to have been demolished. It’s impossible to tell if the building at 500-502 E.Commercial is an old building that’s been remodeled or is a replacement for the building the first Princess was in.

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