James F. Dean Theatre – Summerville, South Carolina


South Carolina  |  SC Picture Project  |  Dorchester County Photos  |  James F. Dean Theatre

Built in 1935, this modest brick building can be found in downtown Summerville across from Hutchison Square. While its exterior may seem simple and unassuming, its interior has offered up romance and intrigue for nearly 70 years – first as a theater, then as a cinema, and now as a theater again.

James Dean Theatre

John Diskes of Summerville, 2006 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Having long played host to storybook adventures, it makes sense that its original owner, Getrude Sanford Legendre, led such a life herself. In 1902 she was born into one of Aiken‘s most privileged families, and as a young woman she became fascinated with game hunting. Since she had the resources to travel, she often journeyed far and wide in search of exotic animals. From India to Africa, and from Alaska to Abyssinia, Legendre was such a skilled hunter that many of her specimens were donated to the Smithsonian Museum.

In fact, she was on an expedition commissioned by the American Museum of Natural History in 1929 when she met her future husband, Summervillian Sidney Legendre. After their marriage, the Legendres purchased Medway Plantation in Goose Creek, which eventually was named an Important Bird Area by the National Audubon Society. Gertrude Legendre became an active environmentalist and conservationist.

Sidney Legendre owned a chain of theaters throughout the South with his brother, Morris, and in 1935 the Legendres built the Summerville Theatre. For decades its walls were adorned with game trophies acquired during Gertrude’s hunting expeditions. The theater operated until the 1950s, when the building was converted to a cinema. Movies were shown here until the early 1970s. It then sat abandoned until 1976, when a burgeoning theater group called the Flowertown Players asked its owner for permission to use the stage.

From that point the theater has held numerous shows each year, briefly closing in 1983 for structural repairs. In 1986 the Flowertown Players purchased the building with support from the Town of Summerville. The group restored the building and named it for James F. Dean, a founding member. In the spring of 2014 a new marquee was installed to recall the original 1935 marquee.

Sidney Legendre died in 1948; Gertrude Legendre died in 2000.



James F. Dean Theatre Info


Address: 133 South Main Street, Summerville, SC 29483
Website: http://www.flowertownplayers.org/ourhistory

James F. Dean Theatre Map



James F. Dean Theatre – Add Info and More Photos


The purpose of the South Carolina Picture Project is to celebrate the beauty of the Palmetto State and create a permanent digital repository for our cultural landmarks and natural landscapes. We invite you to add additional pictures (paintings, photos, etc) of James F. Dean Theatre, and we also invite you to add info, history, stories, and travel tips. Together, we hope to build one of the best and most loved SC resources in the world!


If You Don't Have a Facebook Account, Please Comment Below









TRENDING

July Calendar
July Newsletter
Add New Info
Add New Pictures
Our 5 Goals

SC CATEGORIES

Abbeville ACE Basin Aiken Allendale Anderson Awendaw Bamberg Barns & Farms Barnwell Beaches Beaufort Beech Island Belton Bennettsville Bishopville Blackville Bluffton Bridges Bygone Landmarks Camden Carnegie Libraries Cemeteries Charleston Charleston Navy Base Cheraw Chester Churches Clemson Clinton Clio Colleges Columbia Conway Courthouses Darlington Denmark Dillon Donalds Easley Edgefield Edisto Elloree Fairfax Florence Folly Beach Gaffney Garden City Beach Georgetown Glenn Springs Graniteville Greeleyville Greenville Greenwood Greer Hamburg Hampton Hartsville Hemingway Hilton Head Historic Houses Historic Photos Honea Path Hopkins Hunting Island Isle of Palms Jails James Island Johnsonville Kiawah Island Kingstree Lake City Lakes Lancaster Latta Laurens Lexington Libraries Lighthouses Little River Manning Marion McClellanville McCormick Military Mills Moncks Corner Mountains Mt. Carmel Mt. Pleasant Mullins Murrells Inlet Myrtle Beach National Register Newberry Ninety Six North Augusta North Charleston North Myrtle Beach Orangeburg Parks Pawleys Island Pendleton Pickens Piers Plantations Port Royal Post Offices Restaurants Ridgeway Rivers Robert Mills Rock Hill Rosenwald Schools Salters Saluda Savannah River Site SC Artists SC Heroes of the Alamo Schools Seneca Shrimp Boats Society Hill Spartanburg Sports Springs St. George St. Helena Island St. Matthews Stores Sullivan's Island Summerton Summerville Sumter Synagogues Town Clocks Trains & Depots Trees Trenton Turbeville Ulmer Union Wadmalaw Island Walhalla Walterboro Waterfalls Water Towers Westminster Winnsboro Yemassee York

© 2015 SCIWAY.net, LLC All rights reserved.