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The United Artists Theatre

The United Artists, at 933 S. Broadway, opened in 1927 and was a design of Detroit-based C. Howard Crane. Crane designed similar theatres for United Artists in Detroit and Chicago.  It's now part of the Ace Hotel and known as the Theatre at Ace.

An early view, perhaps c.1928, comes from the amazing Hollywood Postcard collection of Brian McCray. Thanks, Brian!

A 1941 card featuring the theatre appears in several collections. This one is from Cezar Del Valle's Theatre Talks collection.   Cezar is a Brooklyn-based theatre historian.

A nice 40s view comes from Elizabeth Fuller's terrific collection of Old Los Angeles Postcards on Flickr.

 A night view looking north appears in the Vanishing Movie Theatres collection of Don Lewis on Flickr.

Other versions of these cards, as well as more than fifty additional vintage street views are on our main page about the United Artists Theatre.

Tally's Theatre

Not to be confused (but it always is) with Tally's New Broadway farther up the street, this one at 933 S. Broadway (just south of the Hamburger's / May Co. department store building) opened in 1910.

This card from the Michelle Gerdes collection gives us a look north toward 8th St. Tally's is on the far left.  If we wander inside, we encounter this:

Thanks to Nathan Marsak for the great card from his collection on Flickr. Tally's succumbed to the wrecking ball in 1929, making room for Hamburger's store expansion. There's lots more about the building on our Tally's Theatre page.

Tally's New Broadway / Garnett Theatre

Thomas Tally had been involved in other theatrical adventures on Spring and Main Streets. But 1905 he took the big step of going to Broadway and took over a nickelodeon called the Broadway at 554 S. Broadway. He fixed it up a bit and called it Tally's New Broadway. 

Here we see a view looking north that appears on Brent Dickerson's terrific Broadway Tour Part 3. The tour also gives us many more vintage views including visits to Clune's (now the Cameo) and the Orpheum (now the Palace).

Another view of the New Broadway, also from Mr. Dickerson's page. This time we're looking south toward 6th St. Tally later moved on to a new theatre at 833 S. Broadway, a house he just called Tally's Broadway. What was he going to do? Call it the New New Broadway?

For more information see our listing for this earlier theatre under its last name the Garnett Theatre. It's on the Broadway Theatres page.

The Mason Theatre

The Mason, long a major stop on the touring circuit, opened in 1903 as the Mason Opera House. Its location between 1st and 2nd sadly put it on the far edge of the Broadway theatre district as that area expanded south. In the final decades, before its demolition in 1956 for a state office building, it was one of L.A.'s major homes for Spanish language films along with occasional stage shows.

This early postcard was a find of Ken McIntyre for his Facebook page Photos of Los Angeles. Except for an added marquee and vertical sign plus some first floor remodeling, the building looked basically unchanged until its demolition.

We get a bit more traffic in this card from Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards set on Flicker. Go browsing -- she has 686 cards in her set. In this one we're looking south from 1st St. The Mason is the lighter colored building near the far right.

The busiest of the bunch is this hectic view from Alison Martino on the Vintage Los Angeles Facebook page. The facade of the Mason is down there in the center of the card. But even more prominent is the stagehouse on the far right with its three smoke vents -- all the way over on Hill St.  

 The card is dated 1909. The message scribbled on the front reads: "We have ate in this restaurant many a time. Broadway is the main street in Los Angeles - we can walk down here to the corner of First and Broadway from where we are staying in ten minutes. Bye Bye - Linda." 

See our page on the Mason Theatre for many more views of the building.

Grauman's Million Dollar Theatre

The Million Dollar, opened by Sid Grauman in 1918 at 307 S. Broadway, was a fevered dream of A.C. Martin (the building designer) and William Lee Woollett (the designer of the theatre). The decorative influences range from the classical to strange folk tales to the wild west -- the front of the balcony originally had horned heads of cattle attached. This card is from the collection of Michelle Gerdes.

Another card from Michelle Gerdes showing the theatre in its early days with the vertical sign still reading "Grauman's."   Thanks, Michelle! 

There's lots more information about the building on our Million Dollar Theatre web pages.

The Palace Theatre

The theatre now known as the Palace, 830 S. Broadway, opened as the Orpheum in 1911. Here we get a lovely view from up in the second balcony. It's from the Theatre Talks collection of Cezar Del Valle, a Brooklyn-based theatre historian.

The exterior got featured in a number of cards. Here we get the straight-on view in a card from Brian McCray's amazing Hollywood Postcards collection on Picasa. It's based on an early photo -- note we have no vertical signs installed yet.

An early street view looking south on "Busy Broadway" is this colorful card from the Facebook page Bizarre Los Angeles. That's the Orpheum over on the left.

Another view looking south at the theatre in its Orpheum days is this one from the West side of the street. Again, it's from Bizarre Los Angeles.

It's always fun to see a certain card changed over time to update details. Or perhaps just two different companies starting from the same black and white photo and ending up with quite different coloration. This card from Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards collection on Flickr gives us a different take on the same view as the card from Bizarre Los Angeles above.  Don't like that red and white striped skirt of the woman on the corner? Here it's gone. Notice that we also get a barn-red facade on the Orpheum.

A view north on Broadway from 7th St., again from Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards collection, an amazing compendium of (at last count) 686 cards. Thanks, Elizabeth!  The card is based on a c.1918 photo by Martin Behrman in the California State Library collection.

See our web pages on the Palace Theatre for many more views of the building, including a few more postcards.

The Palace and the Los Angeles in 1959

A lovely view of the bright lights of Broadway as we look south in 1959. The Los Angeles Theatre (an S. Charles Lee design from 1931) is on the right with the Palace Theatre on the left. 

The Palace, a design of G. Albert Lansburgh and Robert Brown Young, had originally opened in 1911 as the Orpheum. Follow the links above to our web pages for many photos of each building.

The Los Angeles Theatre in the 40s

It's fun seeing the same basic drawing for a postcard altered over time with different coloration and (sometimes) different signage superimposed. The card above, from the collection of Michelle Gerdes, gives us a view south on Broadway. This particular card was postmarked in 1947.

Another take from the same era, done slightly closer, is this card from the Theatre Talks collection of Cezar Del Valle. Here we get a crowd added.  In both cards, there's a bit of the vertical signs for the Palace Theatre over on the left.

And here's a fun version of the same view from Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards collection on Flickr. Now we get two red cars in the middle of Broadway instead of only one. Her copy of this card bears a 1944 postmark. And, this time we get a moon!

You'll find many more vintage views on our main page about the Los Angeles Theatre. The theatre opened in 1931 and was designed by S. Charles Lee.

Loew's State: early views

An early tinted postcard view of Loew's State in Cezar Del Valle's Theatre Talks collection. Here we don't have much in the way of a marquee on either side and no vertical signs yet. Perhaps the card was done from a drawing before the theatre opened.  The theatre, designed by the firm of Weeks and Day, opened November 12, 1921 at 7th & Broadway, L.A.'s busiest intersection.

Another corner view a bit later, perhaps 1923. This lovely card from the Michelle Gerdes collection appeared on our Los Angeles Theatres Facebook page. Note that there are no readerboards yet on the second floor -- they'll be along soon. And that marquee with the single line of milk glass letters soon gets augmented. Check out the width of the canopy at the office building entrance -- later reduced in size. 

See our pages on the State Theatre for more information and photos.

Loew's State: west on 7th

Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards (686 at last count!) includes this card looking west on 7th St. from Broadway. The theatre, a Weeks and Day design, opened in 1921. Note the second entrance on 7th St. -- it was in use until 1936. Playing at the State is "Dream of Love" with Joan Crawford. The card is based on a 1928 photo that's in the Los Angeles Public Library collection. 

This great 1940 postcard is again from Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards collection on Flickr.  The State is running "Dr. Kildare Goes Home." We're looking up 7th. -- you can see the Warner Theatre on the right at 7th and Hill. The Warner, designed by B. Marcus Priteca, had opened in 1920 as the Pantages.

A wonderful 1950s postcard view from Viewliner Ltd. It's on their post "Streets of LA." We get a glimpse of the "Warners" vertical down a block at 7th and Hill.  The State is running a reissue of "The Westerner" (1940) with Gary Cooper.

Another 50s view. Here we're looking west on 7th. The card above is from the now-vanished website Yesterday LA.

An early 60s look west on 7th on the Photos of Los Angeles Facebook page.The State was running "Ben Hur" (1959). This was not the roadshow engagement -- that was at the Egyptian in Hollywood.

See our pages on the State Theatre and the Warner Theatre for many more views both recent and vintage.

Loew's State: north on Broadway

An early card from the collection of Michelle Gerdes shows Loew's State with Viola Dana in "The Five Dollar Baby," a June 1922 release. The marquee also advertises a "Classy Girl Revue" with a cast of 25.  The State is a Weeks and Day designed theatre that opened in 1921. That's the Bullock's department store building across 7th on the left as we look north on Broadway.

A 20s view looking north on Broadway from Elizabeth Fuller's Old Los Angeles Postcards. The 600 block with the Orpheum/Palace is on the right and the Loew's vertical is on the left. Nice to get an impression (perhaps accurate, perhaps not) of the paint job on the vertical. The card was mailed in 1940 but it's obviously an earlier picture as the (now) Palace Theatre still has the vertical signs saying "Orpheum."

This look north in the 30s gives a glimpse of Loew's State Theatre on the left and the Palace Theatre up the street. The card is from the collection of Gerald DeLuca on Photobucket.

A 1950s view looking north on Broadway, again from Elizabeth Fuller's terrific Old Los Angeles Postcards, with the Loew's State vertical lit in the center of the photo.   By 1956 or so the "Loew's" would be gone and it would be "The State" on the signs. Beyond you can see the Palace Theatre signs.

 See our pages on the State and the Palace for information on those Broadway survivors.

The Morosco/Globe Theatre

We're looking north on Broadway from 8th in this early postcard based on a black and white photograph. It's from the Theatre Talks collection of Brooklyn-based theatre historian Cezar Del Valle. On the corner is the Los Angeles Investment Co. Building, now called the Chapman. Beyond we see the Morosco Theatre, in the Garland Building, designed by Morgan, Walls and Morgan. Note the two verticals - the one nearest reading "Morosco" on this side, the far one saying "Theatre." The signs are gone but the theatre is very much alive. See  our pages on what is now called the Globe Theatre for many photos. Alfred Rosenheim designed the theatre portion of the building.

The President and Bard's 8th St.

An interesting postcard because it's the only known depiction of a marquee on the Merritt Building at 8th & Broadway for an early 1930s short-lived Broadway entrance to Bard's 8th St. Theatre, (1927, Lewis A. Smith) later known as the Olympic. The card is from the collection of Gerald DeLuca.  In the foreground we get a bit of the President Theatre, a name used in the 30s for what had opened as the Morosco (1913, Morgan, Walls and Morgan; Alfred Rosenheim) and is now the Globe Theatre. In the distance to the south there's the Majestic Theatre and the Eastern Columbia Building beyond.

The Garrick and the Morosco

A postcard view looking north on Broadway acoss 8th St. gives us a bit of the Garrick Theatre at the bottom.  The Garrick had opened as the Hyman Theatre in 1910. That lot at 8th & Broadway is now the site of the 1927 Tower Theatre. That's the Chapman Building (1912, Los Angeles Investment Company Building, now loft apartments), on the north side of 8th. with the Morosco (1913, now the Globe Theatre) beyond.   The card is from the Brent Dickerson collection and appears in his "Later Around Broadway and 8th" tour on A Visit To Old Los Angeles.

Clune's Broadway

Clune's, at 528 S. Broadway, was famous for the clock on the signage above the Alfred Rosenheim designed theatre. It wasn't there when the theatre opened in 1910 but got added soon after. Here we get a view of the original signage on a rare postcard located by Michelle Gerdes of the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation. See our Cameo page for more views of the theatre.

Clune's Broadway

Not too many theatres got their interior on a postcard. Here we get this early view of the theatre that opened in 1910 and is still on Broadway. The auditorium is now used for storage but except for the missing seats is relatively unchanged. The Alfred Rosenheim designed building in later years was called the Cameo Theatre. The card appears in Brent Dickerson's fine Broadway Part 3 section of his A Visit To Old Los Angeles

Clune's Broadway

Clune's Broadway, at 528 S. Broadway, opened in 1910. The theatre was later known as the Cameo Theatre and still survives on Broadway with retail in the lobby and the auditorium basically unchanged since the opening except for the removal of the seats. The architect was Alfred Rosenheim, who would later design the Morosco/Globe farther down the street.  The card is from the collection of Cezar Del Valle.

Clune's Broadway and Quinn's Superba

This 1916 view north on the 500 block of Broadway just misses the Pantages (now the Arcade Theatre) but we get its "vaudeville" vertical sign on the far right.  The center of the card features Quinn's Superba, with the red ringed roof sign. To its right is Clune's Broadway (later called the Cameo Theatre), a 1910 design by Alfred Rosenheim. The card comes from the collection of Brooklyn-based theatre historian Cezar Del Valle.

The Arcade Theatre

We're looking north on Broadway at the east side of the 500 block. In the foreground there's the Arcade Building (1924). Just beyond is Dalton's Theatre, later known as the Arcade Theatre, a name it assumed in 1928 in homage to its new neighbor.  The theatre opened as the Pantages in 1910, a design of the firm of Morgan and Walls, later to become Morgan, Walls & Clements.

Beyond Dalton's are Clune's Broadway (now the Cameo Theatre) and the building that used to be the Superba Theatre. By the time of this card, it had been turned into a restaurant. The Roxie now sits on that site. Versions of the card are in several collections, this one from Brian McCray on the Vintage Los Angeles Facebook page.

The Superba, Clune's and Pantages

We're looking south across the east side of the 500 block of Broadway in this early postcard view that's in Nathan Marsak's collection. It's a view sometime between 1914 and 1920. With the oval roof sign, the theatre closest to us is the Superba (1914), followed by Clune's Broadway (1910) and the Pantages (also 1910).

The card appears on the discussion thread Noirish L.A. where Mr. Marsak has a whole set of downtown postcard views, as well as on Flickr

See our pages on the Superba, the Cameo and the Pantages (now the Arcade Theatre) for many more views of the block. The Superba got replaced by the Roxie but the Cameo and Arcade are still there.

By Alfred Rosenheim:
Arrow Theatre (inside Hamburger's Department Store), 1908
Clune's Broadway (later the Cameo), 1910
Morosco Theatre (now the Globe), 1913 -- the office building was by Morgan, Walls and Morgan