Lyceum Theater

Lyceum Theater, 423-431 West Superior Street.

The Lyceum Theater was called “the finest place of amusement in the Northwest.” Traphagen and Fitzpatrick designed the brick and brownstone structure with four massive corner towers and arched windows. The triple arched entrance had bronze doors and was surrounded by carved brownstone with theatrical masques, lions, and floral motifs. A.M. Miller, a Duluth lumberman, financed the Lyceum which opened in 1892, and operas, plays, and vaudeville performed here until 1921, when it became a movie house. It was demolished in 1966, but the theatrical masques were saved to grace the entrance to the Depot Theatre, and the stone lions stand guard at the Duluth Zoo.

From Images of America: Duluth Minnesota
by Sheldon T. Aubut and Maryanne C. Norton

6 thoughts on “Lyceum Theater

  1. We’re dull and out of it? Not likely, with buildings like these. As long as Duluth has this kind of architecture, it will be a Midwest leader in tourism.
    What? Demolished? Oh. Well, it’s still a neat city, thanks to blogs like this.

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  3. I am from Duluth although I have lived in Minneapolis the last 45 years. I remember the Lyceum Theatre well. It is a shame they dmolished the building. It should have been historic and still standing today.

  4. Mom told me many stories about the Lyceum. She did see a lot of the old stars during the Vaudville Era. Being a good church member she had to ‘sneak’ into the theater as a child. I did see a few movies in there before it was torn down.

  5. My great grandfather Theodore Bollman played with his theater company at the Lyceum at the very beginning. Shame all these wonderful old buildings are lost – many to fires prior to 1900.

  6. I lived in Duluth Minn from 1953 to 1958 and walked by this theater but I never went in. I am sorry that I never went in, I think they showed movies 24 hours a day and don’t really know if you could ever see the inside all lit up. It was probably gorgeous. Many of the folks from the bowery use to stay in it and sleep the night there especially in the cold weather. I talked to an older woman who said at the turn of the century when she was a child she would see folks pull up to go in, and she loved the way women wore gloves, that the fingers weren’t covered. It was a great era. Thank you for the wonderful pictures of it.

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