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  • Majestic Arch
  • 1940 Image
  • The Majestic Theatre
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The building of the Masonic Hall on the present site of the Majestic Theatre in 1853 marked the beginning of better entertainment in the city. The two story brick building was a combination lodge room, dance hall, and theatre. Stock companies would come and stay as long as a month and put on plays. In 1876 the Masons appointed a building committee to enlarge their building. The original building was 40 ft. x 100 ft. and was extended to 50 ft. x 120 ft. The architect was John W. Cook and Isreal Beideman, the local contractor. The stage was under the supervision of Warren H. Girvin of Syracuse, N.Y. The new stage was 46.5 ft. wide with a depth of 28 ft. The proscenium arch was 31 ft. high and 26 ft. high. Below the stage were all the mechanics necessary to operate the several trap doors in the stage floor. You entered the theatre through 8 ft. high double doors.

The vestibule had a ticket booth on one side and at the other side was the stairway to the balcony and stairs continuing up to the top floor to the Masonic Lodge Rooms. Upon entering the auditorium from the vestibule you were in a horizontal aisle across the back blocked off by a screen from the seating. In front of the screen was the “Dress Circle” in a horseshoe shape. The seats were on platforms giving each adequate view of the stage.

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