Treasure Chest Thursday
Bathing Girl Review
By Don Taylor
For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at a clipping from the Donna Darling Collection of what appears to be about her playing at the “Indiana Theatre.”
“The Gayety Girl” starring Mary Philbin was released 31 July 1924.[i]
Presenting her “Bathing Beauty Review” sometime in September or October 1924 in Indiana is certainly possible. She played in Illinois in July and August of 1924. Most silent films only played for a couple of months after release, so I suspect it was between July and October she was at the “Indiana.”
Cinema Treasures indicated there were 19 theatre’s name “Indiana Theatre.”[ii] They are:
Town (County) Date Opened
- Chicago, IL About 1910
- Scottsburg 1930
- Gary 1938
- Marian (Grant Co.) Circa 1922
- East Chicago Feb 1925
- South Bend Aug 1925
- Indianapolis 1927
- Indiana, PA Jul 1924
- Terre Haute (Vigo Co.) 1922
- Indianapolis 1927
- Kokomo (Howard Co.) 1920
- New Albany (Floyd) 1919
- Bloomington (Monroe Co.) 1911
- Martinsville Was “Switow’s Dream Theatre” from 1914 until 1917.
- Richmond Was “Murray Theater” from 1909 until 1930.
- Bedford Was “Stone City Opera House” from 1901 until 1924.
- Indianapolis (Marion Co.) Was “Gayety Theater in 1907. Period it was Indiana Theater unknown.
- Fort Wayne 1930
- Fort Wayne Was “Broadway Theatre” from 1923 until 1934.
Theatres that are possible are bolded.
So, the most likely “Indiana Theatres” were in Marian, Terre Haute, Kokomo, New Albany, and Bloomington. Bedford, Indianapolis, Chicago (IL), and Indiana (PA) are also possible but not quite as likely.
- The venue is probably the Indiana Theater, location unknown, After July 1924.
- The show is the “Bathing Beauty Revue” starring Donna Darling.
- Also on bill
- Mary Philbin in “The Gayety Girl”
A lengthy search of Newspapers.Com, Newspaper Archives, Genealogy Bank, Chronicling America, and the Hoosier State Chronicles failed to yield any new information about the probable show location or date. Additionally, I didn’t see any advertisements for an “Indiana” theatre that used a similar font and design as the Donna Darling Collection clipping.
Because newspapers from 1924 will fall out of copyright next year, and because so many publications are being added to the various newspaper services every year, I’ve decided to put this on hold and will return to it in the future.
- Follow-up in 2020.
[i] IMDB: The Gaiety Girl (1924) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0014930/
[ii] Internet: Cinema Treasures. Search for Indiana Theatre – http://cinematreasures.org/theaters?q=Indiana%20Theatre&status=all