Capitol Theatre

296 Water Street,
Augusta, ME 04330

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Paramount Pictures Inc.

Previous Names: Opera House

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Capitol Theatre

The building was constructed in 1865, opening as the Granite Hall on March 7, 1866. It was destroyed by fire in the Winter of 1890, leaving only the four granite walls standing. The Opera House was built on the site in 1891 and it too was destroyed by fire on July 3, 1896. On September 7, 1900 a new second Opera House was opened, again using the original granite walls.

It was renamed Capitol Theatre on October 29, 1930 with Conrad Nagel in “A Lady Surrenders”. It closed as a movie theatre in August 1954. It sat unused until 1964 when it reopened as a live theatre by the Augusta Players. It was closed in 1974. It was demolished in 1983 following a fire.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on July 17, 2008 at 10:23 am

In the 1942-43 Motion Picture Almanac, the Capitol in Augusta is listed as part of Maine & New Hampshire Theatres Co. of Boston.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 21, 2010 at 5:12 pm

Ron and Bryan the Capitol is Still listed in the 1956 Almanac with the same theatre Company.

spectrum on November 15, 2010 at 8:32 pm

I checked on google maps the entire length of water street and the only building that resembled a theater is at approx. 174 Water St. Front looks like it could easily have been a very early theatre building circa 1920, no modernizations, all brick. Side is solid brick and a taller stagehouse area in back. It looks like it has been abandoned for decades, all the small windows in the front are broken out. If this is it, then it was never converted into anything else. Just three sets of double doors in front, marquee long gone. Must be a wreck inside.

Roger Katz
Roger Katz on February 4, 2011 at 10:29 pm

I think you mean at 147, not 174. That’s the old Colonial Theatre.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 27, 2012 at 4:57 am

The Capitol is long gone. It was situated in a building built in 1865 at the corner of Water Street and Market Square (near Winthrop Street.) It was converted into the Capitol Theatre in 1930. The building was demolished in 1983 after a major fire, the third in the building’s history.

The building is landmark #18 on this web page. There’s a small photo from the pre-Capitol period.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 12, 2020 at 11:30 pm

In its issue of August 24, 1964, Boxoffice reported that workers were busy renovating the Capitol Theatre in Augusta, Maine, in preparation for its reopening. The Capitol had closed its doors in August, 1954. I’ve been unable to find any followup articles saying that the house did in fact reopen for movies after a decade of darkness, but the house was definitely used for live performances by the Augusta Players, a local community theater group who performed on its stage from 1964 to 1974.

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