South Carolina Picture Project

Chester Little Theater — Chester, South Carolina

SC Picture Project  |  Chester County  |  Chester Little Theater

This Art Deco-style movie theater in downtown Chester opened sometime around 1913 – possibly earlier – as the Dreamland Theater. The owner of the Dreamland Theater was a man from Greensboro, North Carolina named Roland Hill. In the late 1920s Hill sold the cinema to Joseph Walters. Walters renamed the business the City Theater.

Little Theater Chester

Ann Helms of Spartanburg, 2009 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Walters’ ownership of the theater was brief, as he sold it to Fred Powell shortly after Powell moved to Chester in 1935. The new owner changed the cinema’s name to Powell Theater and renovated the building. Sensing opportunity in the movie theater business, Powell opened a second theater on Main Street with an adjoining soda shop in 1939. He called the second cinema the Chester Theater, and he eventually opening a third cinema on Gadsden Street called the Palmetto Theater. The site of the Palmetto Theater is now a realty office, and the Chester Theater on Main Street was demolished in 1969.

Dreamland Theater

Courtesy of Cinema Treasures, 1917

In later years this building was home to the Chester Little Theater, which hosted live productions. However, due to structural issues, the Chester Little Theater had to vacate the building. Today it stands empty.

Chester Little Theater Info

Address: 107 Wylie Street, SC 29706
GPS Coordinates: 34.705611,-81.212249

Chester Little Theater Map

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