Star Theatre, 1915-1920. Image courtesy of Sandusky Library Archives Research Center
The Star Theatre at 136 Columbus Avenue was built in 1914 as a silent movie theater.
The south end of the building incorporates a wall of the first stone house constructed in Sandusky, owned by Eleutheros Cooke. The theater was popular until talkies made silent movies obsolete. Today the building is home to Mr. Smith’s Coffee House.
The building is made of Flemish-blond brick with bands of terra-cotta trim. The word “THEATRE” on the cornice is a reminder of the building’s historic past. The second floor extends over a brick alley on the north side. The marquee has been removed and the first floor has undergone several changes.
This is Columbus Ave in 1922. You can see the Theatre in the middle of the block. It is the shortest building. If you look closely, you can see that the tall building to the left of the theatre (Donahue Hardware) has a painted mural which appears to be a man win white, perhaps a baker. In the photo above, you can see that another mural has been painted of a feather and butterflies.
Just to the left (or north) you can see an alley. This is one of two alleys on Columbus Street in the downtown area. It is not difficult to imagine this being used to transport scenery, costumes and actors through to the back of the theatre.