State Theatre

503 State Street,
Bristol, VA 24201

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Paramount Pictures Inc.

Functions: Martial Arts School

Previous Names: Eagle Picture Parlour, Eagle Theatre

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Located on the Virginia side of State Street. Opened as the Eagle Picture Parlour, it was operating as the Eagle Theatre by 1914. By the 1926 edition of Film Daily Yearbook, it was (incorrectly) listed as being in Tennessee, when it had 275-seats. It closed in 1927 and became a billiard parlor.

Following a rebuild it reopened on February 17, 1938 as the 397-seat State Theatre, with Bob Burns in “Mountain Music” (again listed incorrectly in the KYB as being in Tennessee). It was operated by Paramount Pictures Inc. through their subsidiary Wilby-Kincey. The seating capacity was later given as 750. It was still open in 1950.

Contributed by JackCoursey

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 8, 2011 at 10:16 pm

According to the caption of a photo on page 79 of the book “Bristol,” by George Stone (Google Books preview,) The State Theatre opened around 1940 in a building at 503 State Street, which would put it on the Virginia side of the street. The building had been occupied by a nickelodeon called the Eagle Picture Parlor during the silent era, and had later housed a billiard parlor. It doesn’t say when the State Theatre closed, but the building is still standing, now occupied by a Karate studio. It doesn’t look big enough to have held 750 seats, though.

The caption also says that there was a theater called the Isis next door to the Eagle (probably at 505 State Street.) The Isis operated at least into the 1920s. That building is also still standing.

50sSNIPES on February 27, 2022 at 9:10 am

The Eagle Theatre Operated From 1910 Until 1927.

After A Decade, The State Theatre Began Construction And Opened Its Doors On February 17, 1938 With Bob Burns In “Mountain Music” Along With A Popeye Cartoon In “Never Kick A Woman”, With An Original Capacity Of 397.

rivest266 on June 21, 2023 at 12:07 pm

This reopened as the State theatre on February 17th, 1938. Grand opening ad posted.

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