Boonville, MO: Thespian Hall

Country: United States of America
State: Missouri
City: Boonville
Location: 522 Main Street / Vine Street

Built 1855-1857 by the Tespian Society, a frontier dramatic organization founded in 1838. Opened 3 July 1857 with a grand ball, and dedication ceremonies held on Independence Day. Used as theatre, club meeting place, library, and city hall. Fortified and used as barracks, hospital and prison during the Civil War. 1901 remodeled into an opera house by J. L. Howard (enlargement of auditorium, addition of a stagehouse). Re-opened as "Stephens Opera House" 5 Oct 1901. 1912-1975 used as nickelodeon theatre and subsequently cinema theatre. 1937 plans to replace the hall by a "modern movie house". Rescued by the "Thespian Hall Preservation Committee". Subsequently renamed "Lyric Theatre". 1975 acquired by The Friends of Historic Boonville, since then several renovations.

Currently again known as "Thespian Hall" and used by The Missouri River Festival of the Arts, Thespian Hall Tonight concerts, student porgrams, community organizations. Home to the Boonville Community Theater.

Links:, CinemaTreasures, Wikipedia

Boonville, MO: Thespian Hall Front Text: "Lyric Theatre, Boonville, Mo.", on sign: "Lyric - Judy Canova - True to the Army - Henry and Dizzy"
Reverse Text: "Thespian Hall, Built (1855-1857) by the Thespian Society, a frontier dramatic organization dating from the 1830s. This building is the oldest surviving theatre building west of the Alleghenies. During the Civil War it was, at various times, fortified against attack, used as a hospital for wounded soldiers, and as a military prison."
Publisher: Shyrack-Givens Grocery Co., Boonville, Mo.; Colourpicture Publication, Cambridge, Mass., U.S.A.; No. 15405
Size: Classic
Sent: from Detroit MI to Colfax WA, 1943

Permanent link: