Known Years of Operation

Mar 19, 1916 - Jan 15, 1920

Number of Seats



S. Morton Cohn

The Strand Theater, formerly known as the National, had its grand opening March 19, 1916. S. Morton Cohn became the director of the theater after the Strand Theater Company purchased the building. The new management of the theater went directly into renovating the interior and spent around $8000 at the time. One of the renovations that came in 1919 was a ramp “to eliminate stair climbing for those to whom it is objectionable.” The theater branded itself in an advertisement in the Sunday Oregonian for the grand opening as a “continuous ‘Photoville.” This meant that programming entertainment would include a combination of beloved vaudeville acts as well as the latest moving pictures.

The Strand's Grand Opening!
Sunday Oregonian, Mar. 15, 1916. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

The Strand Theater heavily used advertisements in local newspapers. An ad from the Morning Oregonian has a logo stating the seats are 10 cents at any time. This same ad also states “You’ll Know Why This Theater Jumped Through the Golden Hoop Called ‘Success” and also tells the readers about the programming. This advertisement is able to attract the community by telling them the price, the program, and also gives them a pitch on why the theater is so successful. The programming in this ad has 4 different vaudeville acts including a “violin virtuoso”, an “aerobatic skit”, as well as blackface comedians. This same program also showed “The Great Problem” featuring Miss. Violet Mersereau. The programming at the Strand Theater changed the entire program every Thursday and Sunday.

Programming at The Strand!
Morning Oregonian, Apr. 6, 1916. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

The Morning Oregonian reported on January 16, 1920, that the Rivoli Theater had its grand opening the previous night. The Strand was purchased by Misha Guterson and was re-opened thus becoming the Rivoli.

Works Cited

  • The Sunday Oregonian, Mar. 15, 1916, p. 5. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

    The Sunday Oregonian, Sep. 21, 1919, p. 15. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

    The Morning Oregonian, Apr. 6, 1916, p. 9. Historic Oregon Newspapers.

    The Morning Oregonian, Jan. 16, 1920, p. 7. Historic Oregon Newspapers.