Jefferson Theatre

116 Easton Street,
De Soto, MO 63020

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dallasmovietheaters on August 25, 2022 at 7:47 am

he Jefferson Theatre shuttered following a four-wall exploitation film about syphilis in the classic, “Damaged Goods” with Pedro de Cordoba on February 12, 1938. Its address was 116 Easton Street. Status - demolished

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on May 1, 2022 at 11:39 pm

The 1902-1903 Cahn guide lists the “Theatre Jefferson” at De Soto as a ground floor house with 973 seats and a stage 40 feet deep and 63 feet between side walls, so a good sized theater. A book about De Soto published in 1897 mentions the Jefferson Opera House. Interestingly enough, the September 11, 1915 Moving Picture World also mentions the Jefferson Opera House, so the two names appear to have been used interchangeably for some time. The Jefferson was probably the house that was earlier called Crawford’s Opera House (ca.1894) and the Masonic Opera House (1884.) If so, it was most likely built in 1883, when a construction journal mentioned a project planned by the Masons in De Soto. One source mentioned the Masonic Lodge being on the upper floor of the Jefferson Theatre building.

This photo shows the Jefferson Theatre’s entrance, on the lowest level of a hillside building which also housed the Post Office on a higher level. The theater’s auditorium had to have been behind the entrance building, though it can’t be clearly seen in the photo. The building was in the 100 block of Easton Street, half a block off of Main Street. It is gone, of course. Here is a Google street view of the building that replaced it. It is Midcentury in style, so the theater was probably demolished not long after closing.