State Theatre

104 E. Ocean Boulevard,
Long Beach, CA 90802

Unfavorite 5 people favorited this theater

Additional Info

Previously operated by: Cabart Theaters Corp, Loew's Inc., Pacific Theatres

Previous Names: Loew's State Theatre

Nearby Theaters

State Theatre exterior

The 1,800-seat Loew’s State Theatre was built in 1919 as part of the Markwell Building (later renamed Jergins Trust Building). It was opened on December 19, 1920 and first operated as a vaudeville/movie theatre. It was a full time movie theatre by 1926 although vaudeville was part of the program into the mid-1930’s. By 1950 it was operated by Cabart Theaters Corp. It was still open in 1976. It was demolished in July 1985 to make way for a mall.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 58 comments)

Simon Overton
Simon Overton on February 13, 2009 at 10:13 am

My dear friend JOSEPH MUSIL has an amazing collection of 35mm slides, especially of ALL the Long Beach theaters.

If you wish to see them screened in the beautiful surroundings of his fabulous Strand Theatre in his SALON OF THE THEATRES in Santa Ana, Ca., I suggest you call him: 714-667-6959 for an appointment.

Interestingly, Mr. Musil headed the restoration of Disney’s El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood and was manager of the Fox Theatre, Long Beach… Please remember there will be an admission fee. The password is “Simon” and the show will be most memorable!!!

kencmcintyre on March 21, 2009 at 5:07 pm

This is the beach side of the State in 1940, from the LAPL. Most if not all photos show the street side, which admittedly was where the theater entrance was:

trooperboots on December 18, 2009 at 3:26 pm

The ornamental tile work along the top of the Jergins Trust building are still in storage by the city of Long Beach. They are at a storage facility on San Francisco Street. Here are photos of the relics here…
View link

TLSLOEWS on September 2, 2010 at 3:26 pm

In Joe Vogals post of 1-18-05 he aked about a photo Christain had posted that looked like the rooftop sign said Loews State, I noticed that too,never saw a reply,was this theatre known as Loews State at one time?

BillCounter on April 17, 2011 at 3:42 pm

The site Card Cow has several nice vintage postcards featuring the State Theatre building:

From the beach:
View link

A closer view looking north on Pine:
View link

Looking east along Ocean Dr. — West Coast Theatre in the distance on the left:
View link

Looking east — closer view – 1936 postmark:
View link

From the water — 1932 Memorial Auditorium on the right:
View link

AndrewBarrett on April 24, 2014 at 5:05 pm

According to David L. Junchen’s “Encyclopedia of the American Theatre Organ”, pg. 628, The State Theatre in Long Beach had a two-manual, four rank Smith organ installed at some point. Mr. Junchen’s incomplete opus list for this firm offers no further details on the instrument, not even a date.

Does anybody know more about this organ, and where it is today?

AndrewBarrett on October 1, 2014 at 4:19 pm

Update (after I’ve checked out the wonderful Los Angeles Movie Palaces webpage on the theatre on Google):

The above-cited entry in Mr. Junchen’s book, citing a 2/4 organ installed at this theatre MUST be incorrect, as to either the theatre name, city name, or size of the organ, since there was apparently only ONE State Theatre in Long Beach (right?!?), and it was 1,800 seats, MUCH too large for a four rank organ!!!

If this entry is really true and really referring to this particular State Theatre (and not a smaller one elsewhere in Long Beach), the organ’s sound would have been lost somewhere between the front and back of the building, with only the front rows of seats hearing the organ (if it was installed near the screen), or only the back rows of seats hearing it (if it was installed near the projection booth, which was quite rare for theatre pipe organs, but not unheard of).

I love small theatre organs (3- through 7-rank), but believe that they sound their very best in a small, resonant house, not a large, cavernous one!


Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 12, 2014 at 7:43 pm

Andrew: I believe the State opened as a two-a-day vaudeville house, and as such would not have needed an organ. Two-a-day houses all had fairly large orchestras. The State was operated by Loew’s for its first two years and was advertised as Loew’s State Theatre.

It’s possible that the Smith organ was installed not in the auditorium but in the lobby, to entertain patrons waiting for the show to begin. More than a few big theaters had lobby organs. The State might have had another organ installed in the auditorium at a later date, after movies became its primary fare.

Backseater on July 9, 2020 at 9:25 am

Here’s a “Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” update. In the version currently on YouTube [1], in the chase sequence at 2:23:07, they go right by the State. The marquee has Gregory Peck and Robert Mitchum in “Cape Fear” (1962) [2].




You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater.