Liberty Art Theater

517 Main Street,
Wellsville, OH 43968

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Previous Names: Liberty Theater

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Liberty Art Theater

The Liberty Theater was built in 1922 by C.J. Vogel and opened February 23, 1923. From 1961 to 1970 it became the Liberty Art Theater. The Liberty Theater is being restored for use as a community theater.

Contributed by Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

dallasmovietheaters on December 20, 2016 at 12:01 am

Launched February 23, 1923 with the film, “The Man Who Played God”

dallasmovietheaters on December 20, 2016 at 1:47 am

aka Liberty Art Theatre from 1961-1970 as it became an art house theater.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 18, 2017 at 3:30 pm

The July 10, 1958, issue of Motion Picture Daily mentions the Liberty Theatre, which had just been closed by its long time owners, the Vogel Brothers:

“Vogel Bros. Move Quarters to Salem

“Special to THE DAILY

“WELLSVILLE, O., July 8.-Vogel Brothers have permanently closed the Liberty, the only local theatre, which was built in 1922 by their late father, Clarence Vogel. They plan to dispose of the property and move to Salem as operational headquarters for their Bengies Drive-in, Baltimore, Md.; Midway Drive-In, Ravenna, O.; Salem Drive-In, Salem, and other Salem interests including a drive-in restaurant and a miniature golf course.

“Jack Vogel, an architectural engineer, has designed many drive-ins including one in Lima, Peru. Paul Vogel, an Army Reserve lieutenant colonel, returns periodically to active duty as instructor at the Army Command and General Staff Officers' School, Ft. Meade, Md.”

As far as I know I’m not related to the Wellsville Vogels. But there are a couple of odd items about this theater from The Moving Picture World in 1923. The first is from the March 10 issue:
“The Literary [sic] Theatre, a new picture house recently opened at Wellsville, Ohio, is the first theatre to be opened in the Wellsville district since the closing of the old Cooper Opera House, which several years ago was famous throughout the Ohio Valley as one of the first burlesque houses in existence within the State.”
The second, from the March 17 issue, is almost identical:
“The Literary Theatre at Wellsville, Ohio, is among the newest picture houses to open in that vicinity. This is the first theatre project in the Wellsville district since the old Valley Theatre was closed several years ago. the Valley being prominent in its time as one of the earliest burlesque houses.”
Why the typesetter for the magazine would think that the house was called the Literary Theatre is anybody’s guess, but most likely the information was conveyed to the magazine in a handwritten letter from the theater’s owner, Clarence Vogel, and Mr. Vogel might have had terrible handwriting. (Hey, maybe we are related, after all.)

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