National Theater

8th Street and Depot Street,
Cincinnati, OH 45204

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Additional Info

Architects: James R. Stewart, Robert W. Stewart

Firms: Stewart & Stewart

Previous Names: State Theater

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Located at 8th Street and Depot Street, this was owned by the Shakespeare family. A small theater, it opened on June 26, 1912 in a conversion of a carriage factory to the plans of architectural firm Stewart & Stewart. It played double features, serials, newsreels, comics.

The National Theater was closed in 1952 and was demolished in 1953.

Contributed by David Hamilton

Recent comments (view all 4 comments)

hanksykes on November 15, 2006 at 2:56 pm

I found a West-end Family Theater at West 8th.&State Street built in 1913 perhaps it changed names later in its film runs.

hanksykes on July 25, 2011 at 2:33 pm

The National Th. was managed and owned by Mr&Mrs.Shakespeare(no joke). The site picture shows a parking lot on the right hand side of the screen ,that’s the former site.

dallasmovietheaters on April 4, 2020 at 9:37 pm

The National Theatre was started by Waldorf Amusement, a fledgling company which was converting horse-centric operations inexpensively into movie theaters. The National Theatre was their first such effort as they converted a carriage factory to the plans of Stewart and Stewart. It launched June 26, 1912 at 2116-8 Eighth Street. The company would also launch its Freeman Theatre in a converted livery on September 12, 1912. Both theaters converted to Movietone sound in 1929 and again to Western Electric sound in 1930 to play talkies. The National was the longest lasting for Waldorf and operator Joseph G. Shakespeare who passed away June 4, 1952. The theatre closed not long after his passing and was demolished.

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