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Our Feature Film: The History of the Eagles Theatre

What’s better than gathering your friends and family and heading into downtown Wabash for a film? Whether you’re a Northern Indiana native or a frequent visitor, you’re probably familiar with the historic Eagles Theatre.

Visitors know and love the nostalgic feel when entering the doors of Eagles. From the upstairs balcony of the original vaudeville theatre to the blinking marquee outside, it’s no wonder that Eagles Theatre serves as a historic monument in Wabash.

Before you head to your next movie night at the Eagles Theatre, read about its history and take a trip down memory lane.

A Plethora of History Behind the Scenes

The Eagles Theatre first opened its doors in Wabash, Indiana on March 27, 1906, and was constructed and financed through the efforts of the Wabash Eagles Lodge. Construction of the venue took place at its current location at 106 West Market Street, on the site of the old Hyman house.

Once completed, entertainment seekers immediately fell in love with the charm and character of the Theatre, and flocked to its first performance, Chicago’s Miss Bertha Gallant, in 1906.

The original Eagles Theatre was built as a vaudeville theatre, which were commonplace in the U.S. before the 1930s. Vaudeville theatres hosted a type of entertainment that encompassed a series of unrelated acts that were grouped together.

Wabash’s Go-To Entertainment Venue

In the 1950s, the Eagles Theatre transformed into the movie venue we know and love today. Then in early 2010, The Honeywell Foundation acquired the historic Eagles Theatre.

Following the acquisition, the Foundation invested in a number of upgrades, including new seats, a projector system, extensive painting and much more. The current theatre holds 440 guests with additional handicap accessible seating.

The Eagles Theatre was reopened in November 2010, and continues to provide first-run movies, Free Movie Mondays in the summer, live performances, Throwback Tuesday films and even rental options for special events.

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