Martin Theatre

626 Market Street,
Chattanooga, TN 37402

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Additional Info

Previous Names: State Theatre

Nearby Theaters

Martin Theatre

The State Theatre opened in 1928. In its later years it was known as the Martin Theatre which closed in 1979 and was demolished later that year.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 25 comments)

bvick777 on July 26, 2010 at 8:57 pm

There are no more drive-ins left in Chattanooga. The only one left in the area that I know of is in Dunlap, across Signal Mountain. Last time I was there they were doing a pretty decent job of keeping the old memories alive and they got a pretty good business with regulars coming from all around. They still had the hot dogs and hamburgers, but no pizza dang But that was over 5 years since I have been there, and I have been in Indiana since then, so it may well be gone too.

bvick777 on July 28, 2010 at 10:15 pm

Well so much for that then. Its sad to know its gone like so many others have gone, to be replaced by grocery stores and walmarts. There is an old theatre here in downtown Crown Point that looks like it was built in the 30`s, I have plans on going there one day hopefully and talking to the projectionist and seeing if he will let me video him starting up a movie. If I do I will post a message on here and a link to youtube so everyone can see it. This is a walk in, not a drive in.

bvick777 on July 29, 2010 at 11:19 am

Yes I think that is the name of it. Ill be driving downtown maybe today or tomorrow so Ill check it out and see for sure.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on July 29, 2010 at 2:17 pm

most of those guys will be glad to let you video tape. I came across one prick in Beauford,S.C. at the Hwy 21 Drive-in.Today he is gone,him and his crabby old wife, and new owners have it they gave me an extensive interview,great new owners. Hwy 21 is on CT.

Will Dunklin
Will Dunklin on July 18, 2011 at 7:38 am

KenRoe et al, I’ve heard a rumor that the II/8 Wurlitzer from this theatre survived in Chattanooga in a person’s home into the 1990’s. Any confirmation or knowledge on this topic?

Shake_me on August 8, 2013 at 7:17 am

I lived in Chattanooga in the 50,s and worked at the Capital Theater as an usher I now live in Somerset Ky and we have a Twin Drive-in and its still going strong it shows all first runs a long with our walk in theaters.Back then their were Theaters all up and down Market Street most opened before noon and ran till 11pm and the side walks were so packed with people you could hardly move.

sandrastephens on December 23, 2015 at 6:48 pm

My dad was a HVAC technician back when these theaters were open. His name was Bill Elrod also known as Larry Elrod. Anybody remember him? Many times they didn’t have the money to pay him and instead paid him in gold and diamond jewelry and once and Thompson Sub machine gun…lol… My father said that some were owned by the “mob”. I don’t know if there is any truth to that its just what I was told by him.

DavidZornig on October 17, 2019 at 7:56 pm

This description credit the Chattanooga has History facebook page. It accompanied the marquee image posted in the Photos section.

The State Theater that was located at 626 Market street, when this photo was made in 1956, it was purchased by the Independent Theaters Inc. from Signal Amusement Co.

The Signal Amusement Company’s officers were Charles H. Simpson Jr. president, Otto J. Heyer Vice president, J. Dewey Bass treasure and Fred S. Turnbull was the secretary .

The property was owned by Z. Carter Patten. And this purchase was the twelfth theater that Independent had now owned in the area.

50sSNIPES on February 1, 2021 at 6:42 pm

Yes The State Theatre Opened On October 1, 1928 With “Glorious Betsy” (A Warner Bros Film). Publix Operated The Theater For Only A Few Years During The Late 1920’s And Early 1930’s.

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