Tallassee Mount Vernon Theatre
321 Barnett Boulevard,
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Firms: Robert and Company
Functions: Community Arts Center
Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: Mt. Vernon Theatre
As of October 2009, The Mount Vernon Theater has been undergoing restoration/rehabilitation, including preventative roof repairs, basic rewiring (for preconstruction), and general cleanup for better understanding of what will be needed for repairs and upgrades, etc. An architectural study is underway to determine the scope of work needed to bring the theatre into compliance with all safety & building codes, with great care being taken to protect the building’s original aesthetic and historic record. It was reopened January 17, 2018.
From the original set of blueprints, the architectural firm was, Robert and Company architects and engineers of Atlanta, GA., with a J.W. Armstead listed as the ‘in charge of’ person. The blueprints are dated 4-27-1935. In the detail section for the cut stone, J.S. Reed Stone Company of Birmingham, AL and Georgia Marble Works of Montgomery, AL are noted. Ingalls Iron Works, Tallassee, AL is noted on a structural iron work detail.
The style is listed as Art Deco but it is not lavish or ‘high’ Art Deco. The styling is most definitely Art Deco but simple and understated. Most notable deco features are cut stone inlay blocks on the exterior, the marquee, and the glass and metal wall sconces.
Also of note, there are numerous backstage signatures on the walls and large air duct on stage left. Traveling troups and local performers from the 1930’s and 1940’s, left their marks, with the latest dated signature from the early 1970’s, when the theatre was in it’s final days of limited use. The most famous signature found is of Hank Williams, who apparently, played the stage and - according to several good sources - frequented the area on more than a few occasions.
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