Texan Theater

812 Capitol Street,
Houston, TX 77002

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Inter-State Amusement Co., Paramount Pictures Inc.

Architects: Henry F. Jonas

Firms: Jonas & Tabor

Styles: Spanish Renaissance

Nearby Theaters

Texan Theater...Houston Texas

The Texan Theater owned by Will Horwitz opened on April 4, 1925 with Marion Davies in “Janice Meredith”. In the early-1930’s, Horwitz was planning to air-condition his three vaudeville/movie theaters located in downtown Houston. The three theaters were the Iris, the Uptown and the Texan Theaters.

Realizing that his air-conditioning project would require excavating the basements under the three theaters, Horwitz decided to connect them with a tunnel. The tunnel became part of Horwitz’s “Uptown Center Project”, which included shops and restaurants upstairs and a penny arcade and a German wine tavern downstairs. Horwitz died in 1941.

The Texan Theater was closed September 8, 1953 and was demolished. By the late-1960’s the tunnels were also demolished.

Contributed by Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 16 comments)

TLSLOEWS on June 27, 2010 at 10:54 pm

In Don Lewis'1937 photo of the box-office I believe the man on the right was singer/moviestar “TEX RITTER”.John Ritters father.The other two are still unknown characters to me anyway.Thanks for the boxfiice article Gerald.

TLSLOEWS on June 27, 2010 at 10:56 pm

By the way the other two look like they are theatre employees,maybe the manager and usherette?

TLSLOEWS on June 28, 2010 at 4:54 pm

Thanks Don love all your theatre photos.

sepiatone on April 29, 2011 at 12:34 pm

According to an ad in the opening day’s Houston Post-Dispatch from the Baldwin Music Shop, the Texan was equipped with a Baldwin piano “which will be used exclusively in broadcasting.”

DavidDymond on March 30, 2013 at 4:31 pm

Will Horwitz was an operating partner of Interstate Amusements a Paramount affiliate!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 18, 2017 at 9:41 pm

Linkrot repair: The September 19, 1953, Boxoffice article about Will Horwitz and the Texan Theatre, to which Gerald A. DeLuca linked on June 27, 2010, can now be found at this link. It notes that the last movies at the Texan had been shown on September 8. The theater was still successful, but had lost its lease. It was demolished to make way for the new home of the Houston Club.

Rotwang on January 27, 2019 at 12:45 am

I remember the tunnels that ran under downtown Houston. I didn’t know why they were built until now, but I thought they were very cool when I was a kid.

MichaelKilgore on January 4, 2020 at 8:22 pm

To reinforce Joe Vogel’s admirable fight against link rot, that long article with photo can also be found at the Boxoffice site.

50sSNIPES on November 14, 2021 at 3:19 pm

The Texan Theater had a handful of incidents throughout the years.

The theater was first managed by Herman V. Dees of Houston, who was 35 at the time of grand opening. Exactly 2 years later on November 26, 1927 at the age of 37, his wife, Minnie Dees, stormed inside the theater to find her husband. While a film was playing at the main auditorium with an unknown amount of people inside the theater, Minnie finds Herman and pulls out a gun, firing 4 bullets at him and was killed. The audience was thrown into a panic and evacuated the theater entirely, including one patron said that a woman has shot Herman and ran away from the building. The assassination itself led into the arrest of Minnie, and was thrown into custody. The couple though had been separated for a brief period of time.

On March 12, 1946 during a showing of “Dr. Terror’s House Of Horrors”, a man, 35-year-old George Dunsworth of 1904 West Dallas Street In Houston suffered a heart attack in the auditorium. He later died before arriving at Jefferson Davis hospital in Houston.

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