Monday, February 15, 2010

Cinemas of the World: The Penway, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, USA

The Penway Theatre, 18th and State Streets, Harrisburg, PA.
Circa 1946/1947. 
Photo by Ross J. Care


The Penway was on the corner of 18th & State Streets in Harrisburg, Pa. State Street was the "grand boulevard" of the capitol city and ran from the impressive State Street Memorial Bridge at the capitol buildings complex to the edge of Reservoir Park.

My family lived on Liberty Street, one block down from the theater. It was the first neighborhood I lived in and the first movie theater I attended.

A later screening of ON THE TOWN at the Penway was the start of my lifelong interest in writing about film and vintage movie theaters. My mother, Edithe, and I are seen at the end of the line waiting to see another MGM musical. (Note that, among an all-star cast, Lucille Bremer is given co-star billing).

More about the Penway: 

I wrote about the Penway and the other Harrisburg theaters I grew up loving (and losing) in my first article for the Library of Congress. The above photograph, circa 1946/1947, by my father, is reproduced on the first page of this article. The article also includes what photos I could find of other downtown and neighborhood Harrisburg theaters and movie stills and graphics from the Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound collections of the Library of Congress.

PERFORMING ARTS ANNUAL, 1986, Iris Newsom, editor, The Library of Congress, Washington, DC, 1986. ISBN: 0-8444-0533-7

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