Construction Begins

Construction sign announcing the coming theater. Photo by George Aurelius.

Construction soon began on the new theater. In fact, I’ll never forget one lazy Sunday afternoon when my dad asked me if I wanted to go see a movie theater. And me, being a bored kid on a Sunday, said, “Of course!” Here I was, thinking my dad was taking me to the movies. Imagine my surprise when we arrived at a construction site. Whatever it was, the walls were just starting to appear, so the first words out of my mouth were, “Where’s the theater?”

My father replied, “You’re standing in the middle of it.” He went back to checking on whatever it was that he had to check on, and that’s when I realized this building was something special. It was the only job site that I recall my father taking me to see.

These are the only known construction photos of the building, and they were taken sometime later. According to George Aurelius’ notes, to position the 124 foot long roof beams, a pair of cranes worked on opposite sides of the building. The crane operators, unable to see one another, communicated by two-way radio. Each beam was carefully hoisted over the top of the building, inched to its location, and then lowered into position.

GM

The roof beam is raised from the truck. Photo by George Aurelius.
The roof beam is slowly moved into position. Photo by George Aurelius.
The roof beam is then placed into position. Photo by George Aurelius.