Auditorium Theatre

5815 Dunsmuir Avenue,
Dunsmuir, CA 96025

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The Auditorium Theatre predated the future and better-known California Theatre. The Sanborn Maps of 1920 show the Auditorium Theatre at what was then 819 Florence Avenue, on the left side of the Hutaff Building.

The Woodland Daily Democrat reported on the August 8, 1921, that fire completely destroyed W.S. Webster’s Auditorium Theatre and other buildings in town. Mr. Webster had owned the building for less than two years and had $3,000 of insurance on the $18,000 loss ($39,000 and $236,000 in 2015). The reason Mr. Webster maintained such low insurance on the theatre was because Dunsmuir at the time had horse-drawn fire equipment making insurance costs prohibitive. It was noted that Webster also owned the other theatre in town (the Strand Theatre).

Stuart Webster was a well-known Woodland man, who owned the Strand Theatre and Granada Theatre in Woodland and previously operated the Strand Theatre in Sacramento. In February 1917 he opened the Strand Theatre in Klamath Falls, Oregon.

According to the National Register of Historic Places, in 1923 an extension of the Hutaff building was erected on the site of the old Auditorium Theatre. Today the Hutaff Building is better known as the Travelers Hotel.

Contributed by Ron Pierce
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