The Jefferson Theatre was designed by noted architect Emile Weil and built in 1927 for the Jefferson Amusement Company, Sol E. Gordon and J. C. Clemmons, partners, at a cost of one million dollars. Constructed of the finest materials available at the time, the Jefferson was a magnificent structure as well as a center for entertainment . . .a Movie Palace. The Beaumont Journal once described it in this manner: “Of striking Old Spanish architecture, the interior radiates romance and charm in the perfect blending of color, tone, architecture, sculpture, and fabric and breathes an eloquence of grandeur that is felt quite as much as it is seen.”
The Jefferson Theatre opened on Monday, November 14, 1927, with a program including The Jefferson Grand Orchestra conducted by Frank Harris, the organ played by Alice Richmond, and the movie “Rose of the Golden West” starring Mary Astor and Gilbert Roland. The theatre hosted traveling shows, vaudevillians and dramas. The Jefferson Theatre was THE showplace of entertainment for four decades and the pride of the Jefferson Amusement Company, led in later years by Julius Gordon, son of Sol Gordon. In addition to the theatre’s other dazzling appointments, a magnificent Robert Morton Wonder Organ, voiced particularly for the acoustics of the Jefferson, was installed on a platform that allowed it to rise majestically from the orchestra pit to stage level. The organ’s 778 pipes and many percussive effects produced a variety of sounds rivaling those of an actual orchestra.
The Jefferson Theatre was beautifully restored after many decades and celebrated its Grand Reopening, November 5-15, 2003.