The Fox Star Theater, Harlem, 1930’s

This photograph was taken during the 1930’s. The Fox Star Theater has been reduced to a second run house by this point. Even Lexington Avenue has streetcars (note the tracks). There was a car barn for these trolleys than covered the entire block of 99th to 100th streets from Lexington to Park Avenue.

The theater used existing structures (it appears to be a small commercial building on the corner and a brownstone next to that) as the space for the outer lobby. The auditorium was built on the site of a skating rink – or at least that’s what is a map of the area from the late 19th century.

The map also shows a road which no longer existed when the map was published in 1897, the Eastern Post Road (originally called the Pequot Path and had been in use by native Americans long before Europeans arrived, was abandoned between 1839 and 1844, the St. Nicholas Avenue-Broadway: St. Nicholas Avenue from 110th Street, with a realignment near 145th Street still exit), switching to Broadway at 169th Street and continuing to 228th Street), which ran north – south at the western end of the auditorium.

It’s located on Lexington Avenue between 107th and 108th streets. It helm almost 2300 seats, it was one of William Fox’s earliest ventures. It was a vaudeville / movie house that was in competition with the big deluxe houses on 86th street, notably Proctor’s 86th.


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