Strand Theatre

529-535 Walnut Street,
Cincinnati, OH 45202

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dallasmovietheaters on October 20, 2022 at 7:01 pm

Associated Theatres Circuit announced tha the Strand would be converted to a Telenews Theatre effective July 17, 1942. The former Strand marquee was donated to the war effort for scrap metal. After the War, the name reverted back to the Strand. It closed “temporarily” for the warm summer months after a double-feature of Jimmy Wakely in “The Lawless Hour” and and Adele Jergens in “Radar Secret Service” which turned out to be the final showings for the Strand on May 27, 1950.

The Strand Theatre was demolished starting late in 1950 through February 1951. Virtually everything was offered for sale by the Cleveland Wrecking Company.

DavidZornig on March 16, 2017 at 5:29 pm

1919 photo added courtesy of Rose Taylor.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 25, 2016 at 9:53 pm

In its biography of architect Rudolph Tietig, the Biographical Dictionary of Cincinnati Architects, 1788-1940 attributes the design of the Strand Theatre to him and his firm of Tietig & Lee, with Walter H. Lee. (Lee’s own rather brief entry in the dictionary lists him as William H. Lee, and a 1909 city directory lists him as Walter L. Lee, but I’m inclined to go with Walter H. Lee, which appears in several reliable sources.)

hanksykes on July 25, 2016 at 7:40 pm

Joe just to make matters more complex there were 3 gaiety theater in Cincinnati all at different address at different times and the newspapers did not always include their address when discussing them in print. A real mind meld is this cinema subject.

hanksykes on July 24, 2016 at 2:15 pm

Hello again Joe, Yes you are correct the American(vaudeville th.) was removed to buildn the Gaiety St. at that address , the Gaity lasted one year and had its name changed to moviehouse Strand. Thanks for the inquirey. Until soon,Hank

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 24, 2016 at 1:46 am

A Cincinnati city directory published in June, 1910, lists a house called the American Theatre at 531 Walnut Street. As this would be under the Strand’s footprint, I’m wondering if it was an earlier name for the same house or if the American was demolished to make way for the Gaiety. A Gaiety Theatre is also listed in 1910, but at the address 1211 Vine Street.

Comfortably Cool
Comfortably Cool on December 14, 2015 at 1:36 pm

The Gayety closed as a burlesque theatre on November 15th, 1914, and was quickly transformed into the Strand for a grand re-opening with movies on Thanksgiving Day (11/26).

hanksykes on July 7, 2015 at 8:12 pm

hello joe vogel, I finally found a site MDHL which gets me to so many journal concerning the film industry. Wonder why I never asked you how to find them? Until soon,Hank

rivest266 on May 31, 2015 at 9:49 am

July 17th, 1942 grand opening ad as Telenews in photo section

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 8, 2013 at 10:26 pm

Thanks, Hank. Owl is an odd name for a hotel, unless it catered mostly to people who slept in the daytime.

hanksykes on November 8, 2013 at 4:25 pm

Gee Joe, you’ve been waiting since June for this answer to your question. According to the city directory of 1929 the OWL sign is for THE OWL HOTEL at 211 West 6th, street in Cincy. No Cigar and no Theater,sorry.

hanksykes on November 8, 2013 at 3:16 pm

Hello Joe, I see the owl sign, but don’t know what business that might be. To the right going down Walnut St. would have been B.F.Keiths Theater on the same street side. I’ll try to find out about that Owl Sign.We never had an Owl Theater name. Maybe our crisscross directory will spill the limas!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 14, 2013 at 6:00 pm

This page of The Film Daily for February 17, 1929, features a photo showing part of the soffit of the Strand Theatre’s marquee and a fancy bracket at the side of the arched entrance. (Click on the + sign in the toolbar at lower right of the page to repeatedly enlarge the image. It can get pretty big before it goes pixely.)

Down the block there is a marquee that looks like it might say The Owl. Was that another theater, or some other business? California had a chain of Owl Drug Co. stores, but I don’t think they had stores in Cincinnati. It might also be a tobacconist’s shop touting Owl Cigars, a popular brand at one time.

hanksykes on October 8, 2012 at 9:33 am

The Gayety Th, site changed its facade very little over its lifetime. Hales Tours was the first venue to move in and their attempt replicated the facade of their Theater at the Chicago Worlds Fair near the turn of the century.Perhaps the name board with a marquee added was its only addition.

hanksykes on October 3, 2012 at 6:18 pm

Joe if you go to the Star Th. site on Cincinnati Th’s you can see the former Hippodrome,Gayety,&Star theaters plot. Originally it also served in 1905 as the venue for a Hales Tour 10 cent show, included the train interior ,silent sound effects,conductor ticket taker,rear projected “Trip To California” and exterior sign board reading next train leaving in ten minutes.I believe this structure was a vancant store prior to its entertainment lifetime.

hanksykes on October 3, 2012 at 6:10 pm

Hello Joe, Yes the Cincinnati local had 3 Gayety theaters at different times. The Strand Th. on Walnut st. of 1914 began as The Gayety Theater of 1913. The Gayety Th. you posted was on East 5th. St.&Walnut,that Gayety had started as The Hippodrome Th. by Marcus Loew in 1906 (a penny arcade and vaudeville house). Finally that same Gayety ended life in 1934, but by then was called The Star Th. The other Gaiety Th. was on Vine 1909 with a varied history starting as a church in the 1840’s,begat itself as a vaudeville house of the Sullivan&Considine chain titled Empress Th. (because all their chain theatres carried that name) ,followed by Marcus Loew of 1914 running it for several years ,later still it became a burlesque theater named Gaiety Th. in the early 1940’s ,in the 1970’s it was torndown to expand our Main Library. I hope this is as complex as it was to trace.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 1, 2012 at 7:29 pm

Here is a bigger version of the photo of Keith’s and the adjacent Strand that Bill linked to on March 15, 2011.

This photo, dated May 16, 1913, shows a Gayety Theatre in Cincinnati, but it doesn’t have any resemblance to the Strand in the other photo.

Did Cincinnati have more than one Gayety Theatre in 1913? Was the front entirely rebuilt when it became the Strand in 1914? Does anybody know?

Bill Eichelberger
Bill Eichelberger on March 15, 2011 at 12:04 pm

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Bill Eichelberger
Bill Eichelberger on August 27, 2009 at 2:03 am

The Strand can be seen to the lower right in this postcard view of the Keith’s Theater. (Best viewed in the large size.)
View link

hanksykes on May 18, 2009 at 7:47 pm

Next to this theater was the Walton Hotel ,as the Strand was being demolished an advertising sign painted on the Hotels side wall unveiled an early ad for the theater painted upon the bricks which read “Clean Burlesque ,you can bring your Mother, Sister, and Sweetheart”.The sign painted in 1912 while the Strand theater, then known as ,“The Gayety”, was being erected over the footprint of the short lived American Theater (5 cent vaudeville,Gus Sun supplied the talent)hadn’t been seen in many years.

hanksykes on April 18, 2007 at 5:30 pm

Strand Th. on Walnut had a full stage for its earlier days were as a burlesque theater, but after a year the Strand became a moviehouse. From time to time the theater was the site of live vaudeville acts and movies on double bills. It was never a first run venue,although located right next to the Keiths theater on Walnut. Today in 2007 it is the site of a parking garage.

hanksykes on April 17, 2007 at 3:04 pm

The Strand Th.opened Nov. 26,1914 with a 10 cent admission and hours of operation from 9am until 11pm.

hanksykes on January 31, 2007 at 1:57 pm

A slight date correction the Tele-News theater which was housed within the Strand Theater opened on Friday July 17,1942 not 1943.Admission was only 25 cents for a 90 minute show. It highlighted the news from War fronts during WWll and a few current Stateside items.