Washington Theatre

1805 Amsterdam Avenue,
New York, NY 10031

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Fox Circuit, Harris Theatrical Enterprises

Architects: Victor Hugo Koehler, Thomas White Lamb

Styles: Adam

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Many experts believe that the Washington Theatre is the oldest surviving theatre anywhere that was designed by architect Thomas W. Lamb. It was built by William Fox Amusement Company and first opened on January 21, 1910. Little known beyond its Hamilton Heights neighborhood, it had been taken over by Harris Theatrical Enterprises by 1935. The Washington Theatre closed in the 1950’s and served for many years as the New Covenant Temple, with its interior substantially intact, although the stage boxes on the side-walls have been removed.

The church vacated the building around 2010, and in June 2013, the building was ‘For Sale’ for $11.5 million, but has been pulled from the market.

Contributed by Warren G. Harris

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

William on May 6, 2004 at 8:17 am

During the 30’s, the Washington Theatre was operated by Harris Theatrical Enterprices, NY. They also operated these other theatres in New York City: Bunny, Claremont, Columbia, Gotham, Sunset and the Washington.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 22, 2011 at 4:48 am

The NYCLPC’s Landmark Designation Report for the Paramount Hotel mentions the Washington Theatre among Thomas Lamb’s works, but says that the project was designed in association with theater architect Victor Hugo Koehler.

Luis Vazquez
Luis Vazquez on December 6, 2011 at 3:56 pm

According to Harlem Bespoke, this theater has been empty for at least a year and has been for sale for that least 6 months. The price has just been reduced from $11.5MM to $8.75MM. It adds that the interior is supposedly substantially intact! Yet another hidden palace in New York and supposedly the oldest of the surviving Thomas Lamb designs. http://harlembespoke.blogspot.com/2009/11/remember-washington-theatre.html

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 7, 2011 at 7:52 am

Sounds like reasonable cause for the LPC to be solicited for a review of the interior as a candidate for landmark protection (he types while laughing knowingly to himself).

robboehm on December 7, 2011 at 9:57 am

At the very least one would hope that someone gets in there and takes a myriad of pictures assuming the worst.

iatse311 on December 29, 2018 at 9:11 pm

http://nycma.lunaimaging.com/luna/servlet/s/44e5y6 tax photo 1940

NewYorkToursbyGary on September 18, 2019 at 7:14 pm

Added pictures yesterday. Got in there last week!

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