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338 South State Street
Salt Lake City, Utah
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Empress Theatre
Magna, Utah

The name 'Empress' is spelled out in with white light bulbs, with a border of red lights.

The Empress Theatre
has opened once again! 
9104 West 2700 South
Magna, Utah
801-347-7373
Empress Theatre

    
 
The OHPAA group continues it's renovating efforts, with an expanded parking area now ready to use and two addtitional rooms now painted!   We have also been officially designated a Non'profit Corporation by the IRS!  The Empress is also the filming location for a new Disney Movie  ("Dadnapped") which will be aired on the Disney Channel next spring.  We are very excited!
  
And come see the new carpet in our lobby! It's gorgeous!
   
 Things are happening fast at the Empress.  You'll have to hurry to keep up!

 
 
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The Elite Theatre on a 1911 Sanborn fire insurance map.

Sanborn Fire Insurance Map
Date: 1911

Elite Theatre
338 South State Street
Salt Lake City, Utah
 
Status:
Unknown 
Open:
Before 1908  
Closed:
After 1912  
 
The Elite Theatre was open from about 1908 to 1912.<1>

Max Florence, a Russian emmigrant and saloon operator, opened a small movie theater in downtown Salt Lake City. Florence expanded over the next couple years so that by 1908 he “practically controlled everything in the film and picture show line in the city”. His success inspired competition and soon his businesses suffered. In order to satisfy his creditors, Florence had to turn over almost all his assests except the Shubert and Elite Theatres.<2 & 3>

In September 1911 Max Florence gained infamy in Utah by trying to blackmail the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Florence secretly photographed the interior of the Salt Lake Temple and then tired to sell the amateur photos to LDS Church President Joseph F. Smith for $100,000. In reply President Smith said, "I will make no bargain with thieves and traffickers in stolen goods." Florence told a group of reporters in New York, “. . . I had a mind to wire to that Mormon prophet that if he made me any madder that I'd come back there and steal the angel Moroni off the main steeple.” The LDS Church later published the book “The House of the Lord” by James E. Talmage, which included professionally-taken photos of the temple's interior.<3>



1. Polk's Salt Lake City Directory, 1908; Polk's Utah Gazetteer and Business Directory, 1908-1909, 1912-1913
2. Deseret Evening News, 11 November 1910
3. "I'm Here for the Cash": Max Florence and the Great Mormon Temple", By Gary James Bergera, Utah Historical Quarterly, Volume 47, Number 1 (Winter 1979), Utah State History CD-ROM