In an era of collective entertainment, before private home entertainment systems, people sought amusement within their communities. One aspect of this community entertainment, the theater, offered a social gathering place. Theaters provided an important dual role for the community—both for entertainment and also a certain amount of public service. Theaters in the 1920s and 1930s, in small towns such as Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, served a much different purpose than they do today, with a more prominent and more important role within society. In the 1920s and 1930s, Gettysburg had several theaters. The two most prominent were the Majestic and the Strand (known as the Photoplay before the 1926 renovation). These buildings acted as true centers and hubs for Gettysburg and the surrounding area. These theaters, “served as a showplace and a gathering place for people of all ages from Adams County and the surrounding area of Northern Maryland.” The building’s primary use, as a theater, provided a much needed social environment where people could come, relax, and be entertained, people would come from all over to attend the movies. As the years went on, renovations were made to improve the building. Even more important than the Majestic’s role as a theater were its ties with the community.
Gallagher, Jay; Burnham, Kelly; and Moll, Nancy
"A Majestic Presence: A Study of the Development of the Majestic Theater In Gettysburg,"
The Gettysburg Historical Journal:
Vol. 1, Article 5.
Available at: http://cupola.gettysburg.edu/ghj/vol1/iss1/5