Learn About the Lost Movie Theaters of Mission Street

On Wednesday, October 19 at 7 pm, the ever-excellent Bernal History Project will host a talk in the meeting room the Bernal Heights Public Library about the lost movie theaters of Mission Street:

During the golden years of moviegoing in the first half of the 20th century, just about everybody went at least once a week. Ten thousand people a day went to the movies in San Francisco on Mission Street alone. Most of the theatres are gone now, or, worse yet, sitting vacant and abandoned as sad reminders of what once was, but will never be again.

But a couple of them have been in business for more than a century and continue to survive and, let us hope, prosper. Jack Tillmany’s presentation offers a guided tour of just about all of them, from 16th Street through the Mission and Bernal Heights to Daly City, in black and white and in color, along with the many streetcar lines that provided transportation on San Francisco’s longest thoroughfare. There will also be a small detour to visit Cortland Avenue’s movie houses, the Cortland and the Capri!

Jack Tillmany is a S.F. transit and movie theatre historian. He is the author of Theatres of San Francisco, Theatres of Oakland, and Theatres of the San Francisco Peninsula, the last with Gary Lee Parks, author of Theatres of San Jose. Copies of all four books will be available at the event at below cover price.

PHOTO: Above, the 9 streetcar passes the Lyceum Theater at 3350 Mission, home of the present-day Safeway parking lot. Photo from Jack Tillmany. Oh, and here’s how the view from the same spot looks today:

3 thoughts on “Learn About the Lost Movie Theaters of Mission Street

  1. I would definitely take issue with the idea that a theatre being demolished is better than being extant-but-unused.

    Remaining theatre buildings at least have the possibility of being restored or used for new purposes. Once something is gone, it’s gone.

  2. Pingback: Then and Now: Mission at Virginia, c. 1925 vs. 2011 | Bernalwood

  3. Pingback: Now Showing: The Lost History of the Former Cortland Theater | Bernalwood

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