Colonial Fox Theatre

Year(s) Listed:
Location Class:
Built: 1920 | Abandoned: N/A
Historic Designation: National Register of Historic Places (2008) Register of Historic Kansas Places (2000)
Status: Under Renovation
Contributor: Kansas Preservation Alliance

Opened in 1920 as the Colonial Theatre, this Italian Renaissance Revival Building features Beaux Arts details and is the only remaining theater in Crawford County from the `Movie Palace’ decade of the 1920’s. Prominent local builder, Asa Messenger modeled the building after a theater in Kansas City and local craftsmen produced the stone, steel and woodwork for the building in addition to the ventilation and heating systems. The theater changed ownership in 1958 and became the Fox Theatre. It provided entertainment for Pittsburg citizens until it closed in the mid-1980s.

This spring, the Colonial Fox Foundation successfully prevented the building from being sold at public auction and now owns the property. Now that the building is safe from demolition, the Foundation is working to raise money to pay for the purchase and also to renovate the building. The public has responded by supporting numerous fundraising efforts; including building tours, benefit concerts and online auctions. The Foundation’s vision is to provide a venue for independent and classic films as well as live performances.

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