THE CAPITOL THEATER
|That's right, the old Plaza Theater
was turned into the Capitol Theater in 1921. The Plaza finally
went out of business in 1919. It was purchased by a couple of
businessmen and completely remodeled to the point that the interior
didn't look a thing like it had before. By now the movies were all
the rage, and the Capitol was born. They tried some more live
stage shows for awhile, but couldn't compete with the very opulent
Kearse Theater just down the block. So from then on, it was
mostly movies with occasional stage shows. In 1923, the Capitol
was gutted by fire. It was rebuilt once again as you see it today.
Notice that the outside of the building has remained the same as the
Plaza, except for the windows and doorway.|
Ad from 1923, same year as the big fire.
NOW FOR A SPECIAL PHOTO
|I normally don't post photos this bad,
but there's so much history going on in this one that I just had to...
because you're looking at the foundation being laid for the old Plaza
Theater on Summers Street! As the Plaza Theater opened in 1912,
we must assume that this photo was taken around 1910 or so.
Looking towards the background, you can see the steeple of the old
Charleston City Hall. To the right on the wall, you can see
a sign. That sign says that the new Plaza Theater will be built
on this spot. Let's take a closer look at the other signs:|
|It's always been typical to rent out
space for signs and billboards on construction property. Here
we have a Potterfields sign "The Rexall Store" selling "Fenway
Candies" at the corner of Capitol & Virginia Streets.
Below are posters and Bills publicizing an aviation meet! Imagine
that! Air shows in 1910 here in the area! Only 25 cents
got you in to see something that you probably had never seen before
in your life! It had to be absolutely astounding to watch back
Also in the photo is this shack promoting
Buffalo Bills Wild West Show. The old Wild West meets new technology
head to head. What a time to have lived in! People were
still using mostly horses, while airplanes flew above!
This last area was impossible for me
to work on simply because there was nothing there to work with.
(see photo below) Nonetheless you see the big excavation and
how deep it is. Those horses appear to be on the move, and one
guy is sitting there watching the photographer.
This is how the washed-out photo looked when I started.
Due to damage, almost hopeless to repair.
See the Capitol Projectors HERE
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