State Theatre

NW Washington Avenue,
Billings, MO 65610

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Additional Info

Previous Names: Princess Theatre, Billings Theatre

Nearby Theaters

July 1950 photo and description credit Larry Wiles.

The Princess Theatre replaced the earlier Princess Theatre which it was adjacent to (the earlier Proncess Theatre has its own page on Cinema Treasures). It was listed as open in 1926. It was renamed the Billings Theatre in 1932 and wired for sound in the same year. In 1946 it was renamed again to the State Theatre.

The State Theatre was destroyed by a fire on July 15, 1950. The fire had started in the adjacent Princess Theatre which was also totally destroyed.

Contributed by Chris1982

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

MichaelKilgore
MichaelKilgore on July 18, 2019 at 9:02 am

“BILLINGS. MO. – O. F. Bolinger has sold the State here to Buford L. Lowrance, an ex-GI new to the business. Bolinger owned the theatre for a year.” —BoxOffice, Feb. 1, 1947

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on March 18, 2022 at 4:59 pm

Additional history, July 1950 photo and description added credit Larry Wiles. (Princess Theatre was next door to State Theatre the way I am reading it…)

“July 1950 the State Theater on the right in the pictures. The old Princess Theater (Bill Gilbert’s) would be just out of the picture to the right but burned to the ground. Notice the men on the roof of the building down the street. They are using a bucket brigade to pour water on the roofs of those buildings, on the end of the block on that side was a Cities Services gas station. In the bottom picture in the center you can just make out part of the band stand that sat on the lot next to the alley.”

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on March 18, 2022 at 5:06 pm

The original “old Princess Theatre” mentioned was next door to the State Theatre. I found a photo of the original Princess, but it is from circa 1915-1920. In it you can see the vacant lot that the State Theatre was later built on, and the buildings next door in the 1950 fire photo I posted. So the original Princess Theatre needs it’s own page. Not to be confused with the other Princess Theatre from 1943 already listed.

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on March 18, 2022 at 5:11 pm

The July 15, 1950 fire started in the old Princess Theatre next door to the State Theatre, and spread to it destroying both as well as another building to the left of the State. The old Princess is where the Bill Gilberts mentioned above was living at the time of the fire.

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