Cameron Theatre

108 N. Houston Avenue,
Cameron, TX 76520

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Rowley United Theatres Inc.

Functions: Bank

Previous Names: Wonderland Theatre

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The Wonderland Theatre was opened in 1910 and was operated by Sam Hefley. On Fecember 19, 1929 it screened its first ‘talkie’. It was renamed Cameron Theatre on September 2, 1933, screening Douglas Fairbanks Jr. in “Morning Glory”. Seating was listed at 380. The theatre was operated by Rowley United Theatres.

The Cameron Theatre closed on August 14, 1955 and has since been demolished. On the site where the theatre once stood is now Classic Bank.

Contributed by Chuck

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

Rogue on January 14, 2010 at 9:46 pm

More info on “The Old Movie Theatres of Texas” book please.

Rogue on January 15, 2010 at 11:01 am

Thanks. I can’t seem to find any info on it.

Granola on May 31, 2017 at 9:31 am


dallasmovietheaters on March 27, 2021 at 5:43 am

This was opened by Sam Hefley in 1910 as the Wonderland likely with a 20-year lease. In 1916, presentation improved with the addition of a Style “K” Wurlitzer Photoplayer that automated playback. In 1920, Helfley built a new-build facility called the New Hefley Theatre which became the “A” theatre and the Wonderland was downgraded to the “B” theatre. A projection booth fire at the New Hefley 1927 led to “A” bookings going to the Wonderland while the other theater was repaired. In 1928, the Wonderland was modernized with a new look.

In 1930, Hefley sold both theaters to Stanley H. Swift of Waco, Texas. The theatre was likely on a 25-year lease. The house got a major refresh including a new Vitaphone sound system in 1930. The Depression was a challenging time and the Wonderland closed in March of 1931. However, business conditions improved and, after a refresh, it was rebranded as the Cameron Theatre re-opening September 2, 1933 with Douglas Fairbanks Jr. in “Morning Glory”.

A second fire that almost destroyed the Milam Theatre in 1941 led to the Wonderland becoming the “A” house until the Milam rebuilding project was completed. On October 15, 1944, Rowley Theatre Circuit took on both the Milam and the Cameron theaters from Swift. The Milam then all but burned down in its third major fire on May 13, 1948 leading to the Wonderland being the “A” house again until the New Milam was opened in November of 1948.

In the television age, the town couldn’t support both hardtop theatres and the new 77-Drive-In. At end of lease, the Wonderland closed in March of 1955. Its bookings were essentially booked at the 77 Drive-In for the Spring. The Cameron got one last chance reopening in August of 1955 very briefly before closing permanently on August 14, 1955 with Dane Clark in “Thunder Pass.”

An unrelated, New Cameron Theatre came about a block away essentially replacing the Milam Theatre whose fourth major fire proved to be a theater-ender. The New Cameron showed both English language and Spanish language films and stayed at 118 South Houston Street until closing in the video age in 1984.

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