University of Kentucky Special Collections has a new exhibit, “Going to the Movies: Depression Era Theaters in Lexington” this summer. The exhibit includes images of Lexington’s seven major theaters during the 1930s, including the Kentucky, Strand, Ada Meade, Ben Ali, and State theaters.
Many of these images are drawn from the University’s Lafayette Studios collection. Acquired in the 1980s, the collection includes images ranging from Lafayette Studios opening in 1923 by Robert J. “Bob” Long and his spouse, Ida Nelson Long, to its closure in 1985 under the ownership of Chester Wainscott. It remains the most comprehensive visual catalogue of Lexington’s commercial history during the 20th Century.
Special Collections’ new exhibit also includes an interactive iPad display, offering patrons the opportunity to learn more about the movies displayed in the exhibit as well as the theaters of the time. The exhibit is open to the general public and I hope you choose to stop by and visit.