La Porte Theatre

415 Lincolnway,
La Porte, IN 46350

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Additional Info

Architects: Henry L. Newhouse

Firms: Newhouse & Bernham

Styles: French Renaissance

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La Porte Theater Exterior View

Opened on July 23, 1923 as a movie theatre and playhouse, the elegant French Renaissance style auditorium originally seated 1,576 on one floor with no balcony. The building took up a whole city block and the facade was dominated by a large tower that was once lighted by multiple glass panes. It was equipped with a Wurlitzer-Hope-Jones Unit organ opened by organist Ambrose J. Larson of the Wurlitzer Company.

Over the years as a movie theatre, the stage was also well used for vaudeville, and by the Civic Concert Club. Otis Skinner played Shylock in “The Merchant of Venice” and Ethel Barrymore did a one night stand appearance in “The Constant Wife”. Another famous artist who appeared on the stage was Madame Schumann-Heinke.

By 1976 the La Porte Theatre was running as an adult porn cinema and was up for sale. The theatre was demolished in December 1977.

Contributed by KenRoe

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on May 1, 2005 at 12:16 am

The La Porte Theatre was demolished in early 1978.

teecee on May 18, 2005 at 1:44 pm

A walnut bannister from the theatre is part of the Music Room display of the La Porte County Historical Society Museum and can be seen partially in the upper photo of this link:

thespis on September 26, 2005 at 1:03 pm

You might want to correct your information about the date that structure was razed to 1977 (instead of 1978 as you note) and also that it seated 1,576 people as opposed to 1,700 as your information states.

Fern Eddy Schultz
La Porte County (IN) Historian

CSWalczak on April 13, 2010 at 6:09 pm

The “1982” picture must have incorrect information in its caption; “The Love Bug” was released in 1968, and the theater was razed in 1977.

Willburg145 on October 11, 2018 at 2:36 am

Imagine this place showing porn? I would love to see pictures from its days showing porn, the interior.

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