1920s Pee Dee Bank &
Opera House
thanks to Harry West

Here's another couple of vintage photos courtesy of
the Charles Deane Collection.

There is no documentation with this first photo, but is
apparent that it is of the PEE DEE BANK on the corner
of Washington and Hancock Streets. Next door is the
old "Opera House", as I believe it was called before it
was remodeled for modern movies and opened as the
RICHMOND THEATER (see last photo).

THEN.... probably in the 1920's. Notice the unpaved
street. Would appear to be Show Posters leaning
against the entrance to the Opera House, as there was
no marquee to advertise then.









TODAY....2008




Today - 2008









The remodeled "Opera House" just before it's opening
as the RICHMOND THEATER...














Remember JOHN'S MUSIC STORE there immediately
west of the theater entrance?

More info on the Richmond Theater by Harry....It was
ALWAYS the RICHMOND THEATER to me. My two
uncles (Allen & Henry Wentz) lived in downtown
Rockingham, and when they were in high school in
the early 40's, they were assistant projectionists at all
three downtown theaters. Most likely, the theater
opened as the RICHMOND THEATER sometime in the
1930's, after "talkies" came along in 1927 ("The Jazz
Singer" with Al Jolson). I know pretty much as a fact
that it was opened by September 24th, 1939, as my
Mom told me that she saw the theatrical "first run" of
THE WIZARD OF OZ at the RICHMOND THEATER the
night before I came into this world.

There is an automobile parked on the curb just out of
view, but it's reflection is in the east window (next to
the weigh scale). It is impossible to pinpoint the year
for that car, but it appears to be a FORD (they all
looked pretty much alike back then) model from
1928-30, as it has the larger than earlier models
chrome front exposed radiator. This photo had to have
been taken after 1928. That parked car is not
necessarily a new one. Soooo... a period between 1928
and 1939 is as close as I can narrow it down for now.

The offices on the second floor were LAW OFFICES,
with the names lettered on the windows. The near
office was C.B. DEANE, (SR.), and the other was a
PITTMAN.