Submitted by scott on

The Capitol was originally built as the Gilmore Opera House in 1857!  It burnt down in 1864, remodelled and reopened in 1865. In April, 1920, it became the Capitol Theater. It had a balcony with a total of 1,450 seats. A prosenium arch curved around the stage/screen and to the right of it, in a wall niche, was a 2,500 pipe Austin organ that was played during it’s silent movie days.  The exterior front had a long marquee with narrow title space on the front. Two verticle signs spelling Capitol hung on the building above either side of the marquee. Above the marquee were large windows with a marble arch crowned at the top by the face of a muse  wearing a helmet. This was a very impressive sight staring down on  Main St. directly across the street from Johnson’s Bookstore.  A ticket booth stood outside in front of it’s doors. The lobby was  marble with side doors on the Pynchon St. side. The Capitol closed  on Feb. 29, 1968. It’s final film was “Bonnie and Clyde”.  In November, 1972, it was demolished and downtown Springfield lost an important part of it’s history. Comment Attached to:

November 7, 1884  

Clippings from the Springfield Republican courtesy Maggie Humberston of the Springfield Museum

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