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Mission (Victory) Theatre - 2/3 Robert-Morton (photoplayer)
Mission, B.C.
Organ installation timeframe: 1923 -
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According to the PSTOS Bill Bunch/Eugene Nye records, a 2/3 Robert-Morton photoplayer was installed in the Mission B.C. "Mission Theatre" in 1923. Unfortunately no theatre of that name is found in the Henderson or Wrigley City Directories for Mission (or "Mission City" as it was known at that time) for 1915 to 1930.
During the 1910s and 20s, Mission City had two operating theatres:
1912: The "Victor Theatre" (first listed in 1913 Henderson City Directory). According to the Mission Community Archives, proprieter Fred Bannister "opened and operated with his wife Nancy, Mission's first theatre, the Victor Picture Theatre where residents could see movies, vaudeville, plays and concerts." Bannister renamed the theatre "Victory Theatre" in July 1920 to commemorate the Allied successes in World War I.
1927: a new "Victory Theatre" opened in 1927 at 33118 First Avenue. According to the Mission Community Archives, Mr. Bannister "built a second theatre located on the corner of what was then called Washington Street (First Avenue today) and James. Officially opened on July 21 by the Honourable Dr. McLean, Minister of Education, the theatre was designed by architect/builder W. Tinney & Company to accommodate the "the steep grade of the lot, there being a raise of seventeen feet from the street level in front to the lane in the rear." It featured seating for 500 people, an orchestra pit, and a 10 foot deep stage "with a proscenium arch 20 feet wide and 14 feet wide providing ample space for concerts, theatricals and public meetings." It was proclaimed "one of the handsomest and best arranged picture houses of its size in the west."
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Victor Theatre, c.1915. Image courtesy Mission Community Archives
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Victory Theatre, c.1927. Image courtesy Mission Community Archives
With an install date of 1923, it's likely the Robert-Morton photoplayer went to the first theatre location. It's possible the instrument was moved to the new Victory Theatre in 1927, but this cannot be verified.
According to the Mission Community Archives, Fred Bannister sold the Victory Theatre to the Odeon chain in 1945 and the building was later demolished.
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Odeon Theatre, late 1940s

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