New Gem Theatre

106 N. 4th Street,
Canton, MO 63435

Unfavorite No one has favorited this theater yet

Additional Info

Previous Names: Gem Theatre

Nearby Theaters

The Gem Theatre was opened in July 1912. The theatre seated 320. On November 3, 1932 it was renamed New Gem Theatre. It was closed on November 9, 1937.

Contributed by Chris1982

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

SethG on April 26, 2018 at 6:55 pm

Map marker is way too far north. Must have been in town. The 100 block is a good bet. Almost certainly demolished, but some buildings on that block might have held a theater.

SethG on April 27, 2018 at 6:37 pm

Don’t know why I didn’t think of this before, but I went to the Sanborn maps. Theater building is at 106 (?) N 4th. Appears on the 1917 map. Same building on the 1909 map is plumbing/undertaking. Appears 1896 at the latest, may be on the 1890 map. If I’m reading the 1917 map right, street number may have been 124 at the time. Building looks like it was remodeled postwar. Flat red brick front with unusual canted display window and doors that look like they might have come off the theater. Usage might be vacant or possibly an apartment on the second floor.

dallasmovietheaters on July 21, 2020 at 10:08 pm

Canton’s Gem Theatre launched January 14, 1910 with motion pictures and 150 folding chairs by William Halloway. Art Goetz and Frank F. Page took on the Gem in December closing for the installation of permanent seating at its relaunch on January 25, 1911. Shows consisted of three one-reel film shorts, live music and other entertainment. Business was brisk and the pair moved to the 106 North 4th location in July 1912. S.R. Staples Hardware took over the original Gem location soon thereafter.

At its new location, the Gem was branded as “the place where you see the pick of the pictures” in 1912. The 1912 film, “From the Manger to the Cross” became the first three-reel feature shown in Canton. Longer silent films became the norm at the venue. Goetz and Page converted the Gem to a more modern theater with sound and sloped floor in May of 1930 by tearing out the rear wall of the theatre. It relaunched June 11, 1930 as the “home of talking pictures” with the Bebe Daniels film, “Rio Rita” supported by the Oswald, the Rabbit, cartoon, “Chile Con Carmon.” Goetz and Page sold the Gem in 1932.

John Louis Collins of the Collins Theatre Circuit took over the theatre in late October 1932 closing it for a major update. It relaunched November 3, 1932 as the New Gem Theater – a name it retained until closure. Playing was “The Night of June 13” supported by a Betty Boop cartoon, a “Hollywood Parade” short and “The Unemployed Ghost” with Tom Howard.

The New Gem received a new RCA sound system and another relaunch on July 20, 1933. Collins Theatres then purchased the former Miller-Starr Opera House which had been home to various businesses between 1922 and 1937 after its days as an opera house. In 1937, the opera house was essentially razed keeping little of the original opera house which had been retrofitted for the various retail ventures. It reopened with its new deco front and interior designed for motion pictures. Collins turned the managerial job over to Raymond McBrayer in October of 1937, He closed the New Gem Theatre on November 9, 1937 with “Manhattan Melodrama.” McBrayer then launched the Canton Theater three nights later for the Collins Circuit in the same address as the opera house on November 12, 1937.

This theatre should be referred to as the New Gem Theater formerly known as the Gem Theater.

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.