Joe Vogel on May 27, 2018 at 4:56 pm
The November 10, 1945, issue of Motion Picture Herald had this brief notice: “The Larkin theatre company has announced plans for construction of a modern theatre in Dowagiac, Mich., to be known as the Chief.”
The Larkin Theatre Company was formed in 1921 and built the Century Theatre that year. L. E. Larkin had been in the theater business at Dowagiac since at least the early 1910s, having managed the Beckwith Theatre and a house called the Orpheum, which might have later been renamed the Larkin Theatre.
In the 1914-15 American Motion Picture Directory Dowagiac had four theaters listed: the Beckwith, the Orpheum, the Park, and the Pastime. The Film Daily Yearbook lists only the Beckwith and the Century at Beckwith from 1926 through 1946, and the Beckwith is unlisted many of those years, and most often listed as closed when it is listed.
The Chief was operating in 1946, though it didn’t appear in the FDY until 1947, the same year the Caruso first appeared.