Bellevue Theatre

536 Dexter Street,
Central Falls, RI 02863

Unfavorite 2 people favorited this theater

Showing 1 - 25 of 34 comments

TCooper on March 14, 2022 at 9:26 am

This was my Grand-Uncle Walter’s theatre during the early 1900’s. Thanks to all for posting historical links and photos.

M_R_G on September 19, 2015 at 6:47 pm

I kind of think this could be a different building, perhaps constructed on the same plot after the Bellevue was demolished. And an 800 seating capacity seems very high. My first trip to The Bellevue (pronounced bell-view) presented me with a super show: Cartoon, Newsreel, 2-reel serial (Prince Valiant!) and a double-feature. I came away from that experience a died-in-the-wool movie fan.

Roger Katz
Roger Katz on February 9, 2014 at 5:51 pm

I don’t think this should be listed as demolished. It is still there in all street views and satellite views.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on February 12, 2011 at 4:46 pm

A 1919 Providence News article reported on certain Central Falls and Valley Falls theatres violating the state prohibition on Sunday film exhibition. READ ARTICLE HERE

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on February 8, 2011 at 12:34 pm

Announcements of what’s playing at Pawtucket and Central Falls movie theatres in November, 1921:

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 17, 2011 at 1:25 pm

“Scratch house”

Reminiscence of the Bellevue Theatre by Lester C. Boyd as noted in the Providence Journal of September 26, 1985:

“Speaking of Central Falls, some readers may recall that a few weeks ago I reminisced in this space about the Bellevue Theater. The other day Norman Shorrock, who was one of the gang that used to walk from Saylesville to Central Falls on Saturday afternoons to go to the Bellevue, dropped in the office to remind me that our name for the theater was ‘The Scratch House,’ the implication being that you were likely to encounter creatures that would set you to scratching. I wouldn’t be surprised if that were true.”

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on January 17, 2011 at 3:33 am

This theatre was part of the September 1923 6th Paramount Week. In this advertisement from the (Providence) Evening Tribune, September 1, 1923, we see a fascinating list of Rhode Island area theatres, many long-gone and long-forgoten, or even unheard of, as well as what they were showing during that week. CLICK HERE and move image to see all theatres.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 29, 2010 at 9:07 am

Operators of various theatres in the Pawtucket-Lincoln-Valley Falls area in 1951, gave their opinions on ways to combat the effects of TV on their theatres. Written as a report for the Pawtucket Times, the results were also reported in Boxoffice magazine in the issue of January 27, 1951:
View link

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 25, 2010 at 6:01 am

Item in Boxoffice magazine, October 9, 1954:

“Melvin Safner of the Safner circuit has taken over the Bellevue Theatre, Central Falls, R.I. on a long term lease. This theatre has been operated for many years by the late Phil Marget and now makes the second house in that city to be operated by the Safners, who have the Lafayette Theatre there.”

Roland L.
Roland L. on January 28, 2008 at 4:43 pm

Well, of all places to get some photo opt. I recently bought a magazine commemorating the soldiers and shipmates from the Pawtucket/Central Falls area.

Keep in mind that it was published in June of 1921. One can then deduce that the Bellevue had to run the very early flickrs and silents.

For the non French among us, the wording reads Compliments of Bellevue Theater, Walter J. Cooper, owner-manager, Dexter Street, Central Falls, RI.

View link

MrPCpa on April 25, 2007 at 4:51 am

I would guess that it closed in the fifties. I moved to Cumberland in 1948 and it was still going strong. I’d have to say around 1955.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on April 25, 2007 at 3:12 am

Mr. P, thank you very much. Sometimes you can loook at an old builking and say to yourself, “This was a theatre,” because of some external evidence like a scenery tower. Here there is nothing evident. Do you know about what year the Bellevue closed? I never went to the Bellevue and am from Johnston. I have a keen interest in old RI theatres. Here you can see my FLICKR SET of pictures on that topic.

MrPCpa on April 25, 2007 at 1:01 am

The red brick building is the Bellevue Theater. The parking lot is where Najarians 5 & 10 was.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on April 21, 2007 at 9:21 am

Mr. P, in THIS PICTURE of Dexter Street, across from Stanley’s, would the red brick building be next to where the Bellevue was (parking lot to its right) or is the red building originally the theatre itself? Rand Street is to the left of the building, just beyond the stores with the apartments above them. I took this yesterday.

MrPCpa on April 20, 2007 at 2:45 am

I was in the Bellevue Theater in 1982. A client of mine who owned FKC Engineering in the rear on Rand Street was leasing it as warehouse space and as far as I know it’s still there. It’s right accross from Stanley’s Hamburgers. I was born in CF in 1939 and spent every Saturday at the matinee. I lived on Mowry Street, attended Dexter Street Scool and West Sude School. Grew up on Stanley’s hamburgers and Sparky’s wieners on the corner of Mowry and Dexter. My mother managed Taylors womens store. My grandmother (Emma Noelte) was the Grande Dame of Dexter Street and Tommy Lyons pulled his wagon collecting Junk. He died a millionaire.

Marialivia on February 20, 2007 at 3:45 pm

Tne branch of the Crawley family that I knew lived on Pine Street back then, but I’m sure they were related to the theater owners. I was sad to hear that Billy Crawley, the one I knew best and whom I dated in high school, had passed away, as well as his sister Ruth. I still hope to see photos someday of the old “Belly-ache” and of the Fairlawn! ML

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 30, 2006 at 12:32 am

The 1949 Film Daily Yearbook listed the seating capacity as 600.

Roland L.
Roland L. on May 8, 2005 at 9:19 pm

I now have four people who attend this theater on the lookout for photos of this theater and one thinks he has pictures of the Imperial Theater in Pawtucket.

Here’s the good news. All remember that the Crawley’s did run the theater and lived on the corner of Rand and Dexter streets.

Here’s the better news. A lady that I see almost 2-3 times a week is the Crawley’s daughter and I never knew it! My mother confirmed this fact with this lady on Saturday so when the lady this week, I’ll ask if she can help us out with pictures or any artifacts. Oh, this lady is a nun!!!

I thought the Lafayette was everyone’s favorite theater in Central Falls but I guess not. It appears the Bellevue was the place to go.

Roland L.
Roland L. on April 16, 2005 at 6:13 am

Gerald, I am not sure if I remember the theater but I have plenty of friends that lived on or around Broadway in Pawtucket. I was a frequent customer of Barry’s Pharmacy on Broadway. It was the last true drug/soda fountain store that I recall.

I’ll ask my friends.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on April 16, 2005 at 5:36 am

Yes, I would like to see photos of all those theatres. Do either of you remember the Broadway? I posted it a while ago but as of now there are no comments. Look here.

Marialivia on April 16, 2005 at 5:29 am

Roland: Don’t be sorry — I’m enjoying the wandering off topic! I don’t remember too much about the area around the Lafayette, as I lived on Lonsdale ave. back then. I don’t remember even going to the Lafayette until I was in my 20s. But the Bellevue, as I said earlier, was a place I frequented from early childhood. And as I’ve noted earlier, we called it “the Belly-ache.” I never enjoyed the “cowboy movie” that preceded the main feature, but I do remember seeing “The Three Mesquiteers” and didn’t know until many years later that John Wayne himself was one of them! Mostly, I remember Gene Autry and Roy Rogers. I seem to remember that there was a stairway in back — was there a balcony? If so, I’m sure I must have ventured up there, as I was an adventurous sort. I hope your friend finds those pictures of the Bellevue! I’ll be watching. ML

Roland L.
Roland L. on April 15, 2005 at 8:34 pm

Marialivia, the reason I knew the name of the cop and the ticket lady was that I talked with a lady who is approaching her 80th birthday. Funny though the ocnversation started on an unrelated matter but when I expressed my interest in the old theaters, she started off with the Bellevue and asked if I knew about it.

She just went on an on about the theaters like the Capitol, Strand, Leroy, Lafayette, etc,… She told me the origins of how Eddie’s Ice Cream Parlor started as Ed owned the concession stand at the Lafayette before branching off into an ice cream place on the corner of Broad and Blackstone streets……

Sorry, getting off topic as I should stick to theaters but I just get too excited!!!

She is looking for pictures that she may have of the Bellevue and other theaters.

Another tidbit, Mr. Balfour, the ‘cop’, lived at Wilfrid Manor on Hunt St, Central Falls until his 95th or 96th birthday.

Marialivia on April 15, 2005 at 2:04 pm

Roland: You are really taking me back down the rosy road of Nostalgia!! You probably have the info about the cop and the ticket lady because people simply KNEW each other back then! Especially in the Pawtucket/Central Falls area. I remember very well a candy store just above the Leroy (going towards CF), and the name “Candy Kettle” rings a bell. My mother was very fond of this candy store, which to me at that time seemed very “fancy.” Ordinarily, if I were going to the movies with my friends or just by myself, I would buy my candy at the drug store. But on the rare occasions when my mother took me, we’d stop in at the “fancy” candy store first!! ML

Roland L.
Roland L. on April 15, 2005 at 1:38 pm

Marialivia, oh do I have a treat for you.

The man who played the ‘cop’ was Thomas Balfour and it was a constables outfit. Mr. Balfour was also given the piano that was in the theater before it was raised.

Guess what his second job was at the theater? He was the projectionist!!

Oh, the lady who sold the tickets and ran the concessions was Annie Lamoreux and she was actually in a convent at one time but they sort of rejected her!!

I bet you’re wondering how I know this info, huh?

Pictures are being sought right now of this theater.

Also, do you remember a place near the Leroy called the Candy Kettle?

Marialivia on April 6, 2005 at 5:40 pm

Roland, I do remember a Stanley’s, but I can’t recall if it was directly across from the Bellevue. At least from the mid-30s, the Bellevue was right around the corner from Rand Street. At one time there was a small restaurant at the very corner, adjacent to the theater, which was called “The Pig ‘n’ Whistle” during the 40s. I do recall Dakin’s Fish and Chips, which was on the opposite side of Dexter Street, closer to Pawtucket. It was there for many years and is the only landmark I can think of which might give you a clue as to the street number. ML