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Historic Wilson Theatre

Rupert, United States

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== History of The Wilson Theatre == The Wilson Theatre, an architectural gem with a storied past, stands proudly on the northwest corner of the historic town square in Rupert, Idaho. Its inception dates back to 1920, when Daniel Ward Wilson, a businessman with roots in St. Louis, embarked on a mission to create a grand theater in his new rural hometown. With an initial population of just 2,000, Rupert was an unlikely location for such an ambitious project. The theater, costing $75,000—well over Wilson's original budget—was a testament to his vision, boasting elaborate stage and screen features, including a gold screen compatible with the latest projectors and a fly-loft for seamless set changes. Designed to host vaudeville acts, silent films, and local events, the 700-seat theater remained operational into the 1950s. Architecturally, the Wilson Theatre is reminiscent of the jewel box banks designed by Louis Sullivan in the Midwest and the Carson, Pirie, Scott and Company department store in Chicago. The two-story brick flatiron building is distinguished by a curved, red brick facade with four decorated arches and terra-cotta-like trimmings, suggesting Sullivan's influence. The western side of the theater includes commercial space, enhancing its mixed-use appeal. Despite its initial glory, the theater faced financial challenges and entered receivership by 1925. Over time, the building's ornate features deteriorated or were removed, and by the 1950s, it had been transformed

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production 0
Mar 1, 2024

Josh Gracin

Rupert · Historic Wilson Theatre

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HW

Historic Wilson Theatre

Administrative address:

610 Fremont Ave, Rupert, ID 83350, United States


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