Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Let's Go To The Movies!

The Citizen - May 4, 1939

Bromley - Roxbury, 1931 (BPL)

Bromley - West Roxbury, 1924 (BPL)

Bromley - West Roxbury, 1924 (BPL)

Centre street, Strand Theatre Marquee, 1920s (JP Historical Society)

Taken from photo above.

Remember the days of local movie houses, before the advent of Cinema 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12? I do, but I confess that by the time I was going to the movies in the 1960s, I had to go to the Rialto in Roslindale square to see Hard Days' Night and It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. My parents often mentioned going to the movies at the Egleston Theatre - The Eggie to them. Unfortunately, I don't have a map available showing the exact location of the Egleston, but I believe that the lot is still empty where it once stood on Washington street. The Madison was opposite Bickford street and the Plant Shoe factory, and the Jamaica was near Hyde Square, at the site of the present Hi-Lo supermarket.

I've already discussed the Strand Theatre (AKA Emmett Hall) here and here. If you click on the black and white photo above (tip o' the hat to Frank N.), you can see the marquee of the Strand Theatre. The view is looking north on Centre street, with the corner of Burroughts street in the left foreground. The Strand marquee is up the street on the left. It certainly would have been neat to have a movie theatre at Centre street and Starr Lane when I was a kid, like earlier generations had the Eggie, the Madison and the Jamaica.


  1. I lived across the street from the Jamaica in 1962 and actually witnessed the tearing down of the theater. I was only 11 years old and didn't understand the significance of this event. After it was torn down, but before the trucks hauled all of the brick away a number of us walked through the mess and actually found pieces of movie film and posters. Once the material was gone, a supermarket was built, "Sklars", which eventually became the "Hi_Low".

  2. I just posted the Jamaica Theater comment, and wanted to add that before moving to Center Street in 1962 I lived ion Bragdon Street near Egleston Square. I often went to the "Eggie" and enjoyed that theater very much. Saturdays were kid days and in 1957 you could see 'Tom and Jerry" cartoons in color before the monster movie came on. A great place. By the time I moved to Center St. the Jamaica was already closed, so I didn't see any features there. The razing of the building was awesome!