53 3rd Street SW,
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Architects: Joseph E. Nason
Previous Names: State Theatre
Built on the site of the Lounge Theatre. The first State Theatre in town was opened January 27, 1928 with “The Better Ole”. It was equipped with a Page organ. In May 1928 it had a new operator and was renamed Huron Theatre. It was part of Minnesota Amusements in the late-1940’s, headquartered in Minneapolis. President was Harry French. The chain operated theatres in Minnesota, the two Dakotas and Wisconsin.
The Huron Theatre was closed following a fire on January 19, 1957 and was demolished in 1959.
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Recent comments (view all 6 comments)
I think Chuck 1231 is mistaken. The Huron Theatre, operated by Minnesota Amusement, which burned to the ground during a Saturday Kids' Matinee in the late 1950’s, was at 53 Third St. and not 228 Dakota S. The building is NOT still there, but the rubble was replaced w/ a new structure. I was the usher at the theatre during the fire.
Mike, you right. My grandfather, Karl (Dutch) Horton was the projectionist that afternoon. The theatre burned during the 1:00 p.m. showing. I was scheduled to go to the 3:00 p.m. showing. I believe the picture was about “Daniel Boone”.
Thanks for the confirmation of my information, Bruce. I remember Karl. Good man. I don’t remember the pic, but the fire and the kids I remember vividly. It started at the lower stage-left (east) corner of the proscenium curtain. Then kids began yelling “Fire”. I was in the balcony at the time and rushed to the bottom of the balcony stairs to direct the kids to the proper exit in order to avoid a “log jam” at the downstairs main exit. We got ‘em all out unscathed, but scared.-mike-
Uploaded 1934 ad.
My three siblings and I were in that fire. It was a free Christmas matinee paid for by the local merchants, enabling parents to drop off their kids at the movie while they shopped. I was four. My sister had taken my brother and I to the balcony, relieved us of our winter gear-gloves, coats, boots-and gone back down to the lobby for treats. The curtain on the left hand side of the screen went up in flames, and at four, I thought it was part of the opening cartoon. Within a very short time, the theater was full of smoke. The firemen arrived very quickly and I remember being picked up and being tossed from fireman to fireman. At the edge of the balcony, the fireman said, “Okay Honey, I’m going to drop you, but someone’s going to catch you and he threw me over the rail. Someone caught me. Now the flames were raging in the ceiling. The theater was on the ground in 30 minutes. One fireman ended up in the hospital, but they were incredible that day. They said it was because the theater was full of kids and had all had fire drills at school they did not panic but followed directions and left the theater as the firemen directed, that no one died. I was one of the first kids out, my sister was one of the last, because she tried to get back to us. I am an old woman now, and I remember that day like it was yesterday.
Architect was Joseph E Nason.It was listed as atmospheric.