Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Colonial Theatre, 235 Arthur Street, Port Arthur, Ontario.....

Wow....Look a those cool old cars in front of the Colonial Theatre!! .... scroll down and click on all photos!!

Not to be outdone by the prestigious other theatres in Fort William and Port Arthur such as the Orpheum where the likes of actors from Stratford-On-Avon in England played to sell out crowds and the Lyceum, well known for its premium vaudeville acts, the Colonial Theatre opened on June 4, 1914 to rave reviews. It was referred to as "The Theatre Beautiful".
1100 patrons attended opening night and the Minneapolis Symphony entertained. It had comfortable roomy seats, was very well ventilated(lots of smokers in those days), and had a new incredible radium gold fibre screen to show the finest details of film in that era.
The opening night motion picture was called "Grant Morden". It was a film featuring a giant freighter by the same name recently launched at the Port Arthur shipyards.
If you strain your eyes and click on the photo to enlarge it you will see that "The Eddie Cantor Story" was playing.
Arthur Street then is now Red River Road after the amalgamation of Fort William and Port Arthur in 1970 into the present city of Thunder Bay.
NEXT - another photo view and film

This next 1940's photo of the beautiful Colonial shows its detail and the fact that "City for Conquest" is playing, starring James Cagney and Ann Sheridan. The mini film is actually a sneak preview of the film....hope it works.a
The final view of the Colonial is taken about 1940 as well with a neat old 30's car in front of the theatre. "Caught in the Draft" was playing with Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour.

The last few pictures here is a lobby poster from "Caught in the Draft", a poster from the early Colonial Days and finally a Bourke's Drug Store matchbook cover. The address is shown as 224 Arthur Street, which is now Red River Road in Port Arthur. The last Colonial photo above shows where Bourke's Drug store was located on RR Road.
Click on all photos and posters to enlarge them!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Also sir Arthur Conan Doyle gave a speech on spiritualism at this theater once in 1923.