Photo thanks to Brent Eades of Almonte.com
On the corner of Bridge and Mill Street once sat The People’s Store and the McAdams store– read-McAdams Store Almonte— It burned down and became The Orpheum, then the O’Brien and nowThe Hub. read-Mary Delaney Caught Stealing at The People’s Store
There was a fire in 1911 and that whole corner burned down as it began in the back of People’s store
Almonte and district suffered no great damage as a result of Saturday’s wind of hurricane proportions. The O’Brien Theatre was the only casualty and about one quarter of its roof was torn off.There was also some damage to the ventilators in the building. The matinee was cancelled but Mr. H. R. Davey was able to make temporary repairs and the night show was held as usual — May 1950 Almonte Gazette
Almonte and district suffered no great damage as a result of Saturday’s wind of hurricane proportions. The O’Brien Theatre was the only casualty and about one quarter of its roof was torn off. There was also some damage to the ventilators in the building. The matinee was cancelled but Mr. H. R. Davey was able to make temporary repairs and the night show was held as usual.
Motoring was most unpleasant and in some sections telephone poles were torn down. The fire brigade responded to four fires on Saturday, three of which were in less than an hour. One was a chimney fire at the home of Mr. James Waddell in New England. Another was a grass fire at the end of Ann St.; the next was at the residence of Mr. Archie Levitan where leaves caught fire in some unexplained way and the fourth was at the home of Mr. Edgar Lowry, corner of Country and Church Streets. This one started from a fire that had been set out several days before and the embers were fanned into life by the high wind.
May 1930 Almonte Gazette
Everything is just about ready for the reopening of the Orpheum Theatre here and the first official showing will be on Monday afternoon and evening next, June 30th. The first picture to be shown will be the First National beautiful, all technicolor, musical comedy story “Sally,” which both on the stage and through the sound screen has proven very popular and entertaining. The management have made a special effort to secure a positive atmosphere with courtesy and pleasure and a sucessful production for presentation.
Mr. Bruck is general manager and an excellent picture has been procured for the opening day. The new theatre is one of the best in the Ottawa Valley and no doubt will be a great drawing card for Almonte.
The picture “Sally” will be shown on both Monday and Tuesday of next week, and will be followed by dramatic and musical attractions that will amuse and entertain the large audiences which it is expected to patronize the new theatre. The program also of the management is to show only features of a high standard which will be superior in quality and of a calibre that will insure a successful entertainment. The advertising pages of the Gazette will from time to time announce the various sound pictures that have been booked for showing here. The new O’Brien Theatre is a commercial enterprise, but it is more.
This new theatre in Almonte is a testimony to the man whose name ‘it bears; expense has not entered into the construction and equipping of the O’Brien Theatre; only the best in each of the various lines necessary to the building and equipping of the O’ Brien Theatre was allowed into the architects’ specifications. The result is that Almonte now has a beautiful Movitone and Vitaplione motion picture building, very modern in design, acoustically perfect, and absolutely fireproof.
The new O’Brien. Theatre is a distinct asset to the town. In addition, the furnishings and the equipment are of the most advanced and approved designs that the world’s markets had to offer, and everything has been laid out to ensure public approval. The old Orpheum Theatre has been entirely remodelled and built; the canopy over the main entrance and the immense electrical sign present an imposing and attractive appearance; there are three entrance doors from Main street into the lobby. In addition there are two exit doors which open on to Bridge street, and these two exits will enable the theatre to be emptied at any time very rapidly. The main theatre building is of brick and concrete and the floors are covered with fresh cement which is a sound deadener. A very modern ventilation system has been installed so as to provide for the free circulation of fresh air continuously. Entering the theatre one goes from the lobby to the main part of the house. The lighting effects in the lobby are modernistic. Particularly artistic photo frame and mirrors decorate both the lobby and foyer.
These lend a very attractive appearance to this section of the entrance. Going from the lobby one enters the main part of the theatre, with its wide aisles and beautiful, comfortable, upholstered opera chairs, with leather air cushions and upholstered backs finished in wine color.
Indirect lighting of the aisles is a very up-to-date touch which will no doubt be appreciated by the patrons coming in during the performance. On the stage is a large Vocalite sound screen equipped with an automatic screen modifier, also electrically operated and controlled. This screen and modifier is one of the new real WS features of the Q’Brien Theatre. The stage back of the Vocalite sound screen has been draped with heavy and artistically finished velour hangings, and the scenic effect will compare with any of the theatres in the larger cities of Canada and the United States.
The owners of the O’Brien Theatre gave a great deal of time and attention to the question of sound equipment, and after investigating many different styles and makes of machines decided to install the high class Northern Electric sound equipment for both Movitone and Vitaphone in addition to new Simplex projection machines. This newest sound equipment will enable the proper presentation of the bigger and best of the talkies and where feasible the screen will give life size reproduction.
The main contract for the construction of the new O’Brien Theatre was awarded on a tender basis to M. Sullivan & Son, Arnprior. The architects were Messrs. Richards and Abra of Ottawa, and local firms whose work has assisted in the completion of this fine new building were: Taylor Bros., The proscenium curtains, valances, draperies, carpels and furniture for the O ’Brien Theatre here, and also those in Renfrew, Arnprior and Pembroke, were made and installed by A. J. Frieman, Ottawa.
Broadloom Axminster carpets, reversible gold French velours, black silk velours and figure silk damasks, all richly trimmed, together with highest grade available. The main contract for the construction of the new O’Brien Theatre was awarded on a tender basis to M. Sullivan & Son, Arnprior. The architects , were Messrs. Richards and Abra of Ottawa, and local firms whose work has assisted in the completion of this fine new building were: Taylor Bros., The proscenium curtains, valances, draperies, carpels and furniture for the O ’Brien Theatre here, and also those in Renfrew, Arnprior and Pembroke, were made and installed by A. J. Frieman, Ottawa.
The theatre was owned and operated by Ottawa Valley Amusements, owned by Renfrew entrepreneur M. J. O’Brien. The Renfrew Theatre was part of a chain that included theatres in Arnprior (now once again associated with Renfrew), and Pembroke, Almonte and Carleton Place.
Marilyn Miller 1929 in Sally which was playing at the O’ Brien
Photo- Nikki Thornton
Photo Allan Stanley— read-Lottie Barr’s Chips Almonte –Thanks to Allan Stanley
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
28 Dec 1942, Mon • Page 12
Our pushing young merchants, Messrs. Riddell & McAdam,
have purchased the •People’s Store• property from Mrs. J.T~
Brown, and will shortly remove to their new stand. The price
paid was $5,550. At the sale on Saturday afternoon .Mr. Wm.
Curry, blacksmith, bought the Cowie pump factory and the
residence adjoining, paying therefor.$950. Sept 1890 Almonte Gazette–https://lindaseccaspina.wordpress.com/…/mary-delaney…/
Lottie Barr’s Chips Almonte –Thanks to Allan Stanley
Seeds of Love–Almonte Cinema – Then and Now