Roxbury Theatre

2170 Washington Street,
Roxbury, MA 02119

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rrahim on November 10, 2013 at 6:09 am

Hey, I remember the Roxie theatre on Washington st. It was only 9 cents to get in. It was pretty run down when my siblings and I attended in the early 1950’s and at time a scary place for children as derelicts sometimes slept there as there was no time limit to leaving after watching a movie. “Scary”

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on April 2, 2012 at 11:20 am

Linesides- Yes, the little photo is the Ferdinands building. You can also see it in the distance if you rotate the picture above to the right. The Ferdinands Furniture building,which I think was also called “the Blue building”, is to be rehabbed into office space. There was a Roxie Theatre in Roxbury and it’s here in Cinema Treasures, too. It was a new name for the old Shawmut Theatre on Blue Hill Avenue. Another theater in the Dudley area was the Dudley Theatre, it was on Washington Street near the Roxbury Theatre, on the same side of the street. Then there was the Puritan, which was up north aways, on the opposite side of the street, near Mass. Ave. Plus the Warren Theatre several blocks south of the Dudley Square area. There was no shortage of places to go to the movies in that area around 1950!

LINESIDES on April 1, 2012 at 11:36 am

This was another theater the kids in the neighborhoods used to go to.
In the day they were nine cents!

LINESIDES on April 1, 2012 at 11:35 am

Hello Ron, There was a theater on Washington street. I believe the large bill board above the entrance was by the name of the Roxie or Roxy. The small photo croped in the right of the Google picture above with blue windows is Ferdinands.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on April 1, 2012 at 10:55 am

The photos mentioned in the first comment above are on the MGM Theater reports and are not reproduced on this page. The color photo above is not Ferdinand’s building, which is to the south of this spot.

LINESIDES on April 1, 2012 at 6:43 am

Folks!! Its like a speculation contest! Where are the photos spoke about in the first comment? The photo that is shown is a picture of Ferdenans furnature store!!!

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on April 27, 2011 at 10:39 am

MarkB- yes, in that era some halls, such as fraternal halls, were leased out to a movie operator and became inexpensive neighborhood silient film cinemas. Sometimes these operations didn’t last too long, especially if new “real” theaters were being built nearby.

MarkB on April 27, 2011 at 7:54 am

I see that the Orienta was a Hall and not a theater at one time. The Masons held meetings at the Orienta for a while. Maybe it was converted to a theater later.

MarkB on April 27, 2011 at 7:48 am

In 1915, the same building is named Rugby on a fire insurance map. Could be Rugby Theater, and could be just the Rugby Building. The same map has the Orienta Hall next door.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on February 7, 2011 at 11:19 am

In the street directory section of the 1918 Boston Register and Business Directory, Issue 83, the Roxbury Theatre was the second of 3 theaters in its block, on the east side of Washington Street, with Eustis St and Nawn St. to the north, and Palmer St. to the south. The 3 theaters, from north to south, were the Orienta Theatre at 2154 Washington, the Roxbury Th. at 2174, and the Dudley Th. at 2202 Washington. I have never heard of the Orienta Th. before.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on November 12, 2010 at 12:02 pm

The Roxbury Th. is listed in the 1927 Film Daily Yearbook as having 600 seats and open daily.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on January 16, 2010 at 10:42 am

The site of the Roxbury Theatre is today a vacant lot just to the right of the African Art store at 2164 Washington St.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on March 1, 2007 at 7:44 am

Correction to the above: the second photo on the MGM Report is dated “July 1950”.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on February 25, 2007 at 8:03 am

The MGM Theatre Photograph and Report form for the Roxbury Theatre has 2 exterior photos. The first is dated 1941 and shows a small rectangular marquee with the name “Roxbury” on the front. There are cloth banners hanging from the marquee, but I can’t read what’s on them. There are poster cases on either side of the entrance. The second photo is undated but judging from the cars in the scene, it probably dates from late-1940s or circa-1950. There is a much larger marquee, with 3 sides, spanning the entire width of the theatre. It has the name “Roxbury” in huge neon letters on the front panel. Movies posted are “It Happens Every Spring” and “Guns and Guitars”. The bottom edge of the elevated railway structure shows clearly at the top of the photo. The Report states that the Roxbury had been showing MGM films for 15 years; that it was built about 1910, was in Poor condition, and had 525 seats on the main floor and 125 in the balcony, total: 650 seats. It’s listed under Charles Morse theatres in the 1942-43 Motion Picture Almanac. I saw this theatre many times while riding the old Orange Line in the period 1968-1975. It was closed and the marquee had been removed, but it was not in bad shape outside. It was brick and had an elevated stage house to the rear. It was on the east side of Washington Street a short distance to the north of Dudley MBTA “el” station.