Another piece of history razed

PC-opera house-post card.jpg

By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
Northeast News
August 21, 2013

The Grand Opera House located at Seventh and Walnut is this week’s historic postcard, made in Germany and a wonderful example of a hand-colored card of the day.

The message on the back is barely legible in spots but can still be made out. It reads: “Dear Gunnild, How are you? We are fine and dandy. Thank you for the nice postal cards you sent me. You must come over Sunday, ask your mother if you can’t. I haven’t very much to reveal, but I think I have to close for this time. Tell Gilda hello from me. Love, Freida.”

The card was mailed to Miss Gunnild Homme, RFD 1, Thompson, N.D.

The Grand was built on the site of the old Midland Theater that once stood on the same site. The Midland opened to much fanfare on Sept. 1, 1889. Interestingly, it was razed less than a year later, and the Grand Opera House was built on the same site by Abraham Judah and Melville Hudson, former manager of the Coates Opera House.

Opening in 1891 as a stage venue, the Grand saw such notable actors as Ethel Barrymore and George M. Cohan play its stage. A drug store stood to the right of the main canopy, and a saloon operated on the left side of the main entrance. Inside the opera house’s walls were fine oil paintings to greet the “highbrow” clientele who patronized the saloon between acts of the plays.

The building was remodeled in 1902, and 15 years later announced as a film screening spot. Business faltered, though, and on Christmas Day in 1921, the theater closed. The Scarritt estate transitioned the structure to an automobile parking garage in 1926 and was razed in 2009.

Comments are closed.

  • Mt. Washington still a peaceful respite

    November 12th, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News November 12, 2014 This postcard published by the Webb-Freyschlag Mercantile Company shows a peaceful view […]


    Eagle’s lodge once a place of history

    November 5th, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News November 5, 2014 This week we take a look at the Queen Anne-styled James Ogelbay […]


    Haunting Halloween Greetings

    October 28th, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News October 29, 2014 Marked by old greeting postcards like these, the tradition of Halloween traces […]


    KC’s first fire fighters honored

    October 21st, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News October 22, 2014 In March 1867, the Missouri Legislature granted permission to allow Kansas City, […]


    Majestic hours once lived on Armour Blvd

    October 14th, 2014
    by

    This postcard published by the Elite Postcard Company of Kansas City doubles as an advertising postcard for the Jenkins Music […]


  • Parade's a downtown tradition

    October 7th, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News October 8, 2014 This week’s historic postcard is a Real Photo postcard that shows a […]


    It’s American Royal time again!

    September 30th, 2014
    by

    By Michael Bushnell Northeast News October 1, 2014 About two years after the opening of the “new” Hannibal Bridge over […]


    Oldsmobile Rhythmic ride!

    September 23rd, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News September 24, 2014 This marketing postcard was produced by the Oldsmobile Motor Company for Kansas […]


    Brush Creek synonymous with Plaza living

    September 16th, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News September 17, 2014 This Kodachrome postcard published in the late 1950s shows the numerous apartment […]


    Grand Old Opera house

    September 9th, 2014
    by

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL Northeast News September 10, 2014 The Grand Opera House located at Seventh and Walnut is this week’s […]


  • Local Weather