Grand Theatre

106 W. Jackson Street,
Iola, KS 66749

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Additional Info

Architects: F.M. Anderson

Nearby Theaters

GRAND Theatre; Iola, Kansas.

The Grand Theatre was opened January 8, 1904. By 1914 it was screening movies. It was destroyed by fire on December 20, 1924.

Contributed by Billy Holcomb / Don Lewis / Billy Smith

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

dallasmovietheaters on February 28, 2016 at 5:29 am

Architected by F.M. Anderson of Galena and Iola, KS in 1903 with a New Year’s Eve planned launch. The disastrous Iroquois Theatre in Chicago fire happened on December 30, 1903 and people were so nervous about the Grand’s planned opening that plans were scrapped so that two last minute exits could be added to the Grand second tier. The theatre opened January 8, 1904.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 20, 2017 at 2:53 pm

If somebody can get access to the archives at Leonard H. Axe Library at Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kansas, they might find the manuscript of a thesis by Gerald E. Snider, dated 1969, titled The history and function of the Grand Theatre, Iola, Kansas. It’s listed at WorldCat, anyway.

The May 13, 1907, issue of The Iola Register ran an illustrated article about the Grand Theatre, and noted that it had a stage 30x62 feet, with a proscenium 25x17 feet. There were 545 seats in the parquet, 449 in the balcony, 327 in the gallery, and ten boxes with a total of 60 seats (1,381 for the entire house.)

All I’ve been able to find out about architect F. M. Anderson is that for many years he was a member of the firm of Anderson & Strong in Galena, where they designed the NRHP-listed E. B. Schermerhorn house, but a 1904 directory lists him both as a member of that firm and as having his own office in the Northrop Block in Iola.

dallasmovietheaters on September 6, 2021 at 7:26 am

The theatre was almost completely destroyed by fire on December 20, 1924 ending its operation. The building’s foundation and some elements were used in its rebuilding as the Grand Garage.

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