Stanley Opera House

St. Johnsbury, VT

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Additional Info

Previous Names: Opera House

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No theaters found within 30 miles

The opening date to the 900-seated Opera House is very impossible to find, but was opened in the middle portion of the 1880’s. The Opera House was operated by Messrs. Eels & Eddy of Brattleboro. They operated the house until C. A. Stanley took it over on March 8, 1893, renaming as the Stanley Opera House. Motion pictures began screening at the Stanley Opera House in the middle of August 1908 by the Novelty Motion Picture Co.

The Stanley Opera House had stopped advertising on papers beginning in the first week of December 1909, but information still continues onwards.

An early June 1, 1910 morning turned into a nightmare for the Stanley Opera House as William Dunn at 1:00 AM (a night watchman of the C. H. Goss & Company garage, which adjoins the laundry department, a comparative stranger in St. Johnsbury and unfamiliar with the working of fire alarm systems) had discovered a fire inside the Stanley Opera House. An explosion was later involved as well. The explosion was first reported as a gasoline explosion inside a laundry store, simply named the Summer Street Laundry. The fire is actually reported “almost massive”, which had raged for its entirety. The entire fire department had responded code 3 in full house. The fire caused a few other places as well including a fireproof garage that stores or repairs vehicles. Automobiles were damaged as well in a vicinity of $15,000 but the loss to the building is not exceed in a total of $1,000. The garage carried no insurance aside from $4,000 on the Stanley Opera House which was purchased during the Winter 1909-1910 timeframe by Elmer A. Darling for $7,000. The laundry is almost damaged as well.

The Stanley Opera House’s auditorium is smaller than the Bertrand Hall which opened on January 7, 1910, but the Bertrand Hall has a lot of information but recommends that its just a dance hall, not a theater or opera house.

Contributed by 50sSNIPES
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