First advertisement for the Cozy Theatre, formerly the Oracle, showing Charlie Chaplin in 'Easy Street.' - , Utah
7 May 1917
Oracle Theatre
(Cozy Theatre)

2476 Washington Avenue
Ogden, Utah 84401

(Before 1909 - After 1923)

After the Electric Theatre opened to great success in November 1907, its owners opened the Oracle Theatre, then the Globe and Isis.[1][2][3] Advertisements featuring the three newer theaters began appearing in the Ogden Standard Examiner in August 1909.[4]

In September 1911, the Oracle Theater Company filed articles of incorporation, with $25,000 in capital and the objective of giving “theatrical and moving picture performances in Utah and Wyoming, particularly at Rock Springs, Wyoming.” The incorporators were Charles Ziemer, president; H. T. Moore, vice president and manager; H. A. Sims, secretary and treasure; Albert Scowcroft; and Susie M. Sims.[5] The company was likely named after the principal theater in the current chain.

The firm of Cather & Wheelwright sold the Oracle Theatre on 15 November 1914, then posted a notice in the Ogden Standard Examiner saying they would not be responsible for bills contracted after that date.[6]

Stanley B. Steck acquired the Oracle Theatre in April 1917 from from Roscoe Clasmann and Steve Hagans,[2] promising the “usual high standard of performances will be given at all times.” He changed the name to Cozy Theatre on 7 May 1917. Steck “spared no means or pains in decorating the front of the building.” For the interior, he laid brussels carpets and placed velvet portieres and hangings. The Ogden Standard Examiner reported that the Cozy “is indeed entitled to the name. The place has been thoroughly gone over by painters, decorators and finishers of the best type until the entire house has been made a veritable cozy theatrical home.”[7]

In October 1920, Steck installed two of the “latest model Powers 6B motion picture machines,” along with Worman automatic re-wind machines.[8]

Steck sold the Cozy Theatre to the Ogden Theatre Company on 18 May 1923, intending to devote all his time to the Lyceum and Rex theaters. Harmon Perry took over management of the theater, promising no change in policy.[2]

“In retiring from the Cozy,” Steck said, “I want to thank my patrons for the support they have given me in my theatres. They have made possible whatever success I have attained and to them I desire to express my appreciation.”[2]

A. M. Miller, owner of the Washington Market, purchased the Cozy Theatre building from George M. Wheelwright and Gideon H. Malan for $42,000 on 22 May 1923. Miller had tentative plans to build a modern, five-story office building on the site, after the lease on the Cozy Theatre expired in several years. The Washington Market, just north of the Cozy, would extend into the frontage the new building would offer.[9]

Two years later, Miller announced the Cozy Theatre would “be made vacant” by 18 May 1925. Remodeling of the ground floor into a modern store was to begin, following the removal of the theater equipment. Exact details of the remodeling were indefinite, pending a new tenant.[10] A classified ad a day following the announcement read, “Cozy theatre location for rent. Will remodel to suit tenant. See A. M. Miller, Washington market.”[11] The city issued a permit for a $2,000 remodeling project on 4 June 1925.[12]

Steck later gave the name Cozy to the Rex Theatre. In September 1929, he started remodeling and redecorating the theater at an expense of several thousand dollars.[13]

1. "Theater on Hudson Avenue is to Cost Approximately $150,000", Ogden Standard Examiner, 26 March 1914, page 7
2. "Steck Sells Cozy Theatre", Ogden Standard Examiner, 18 May 1923, page 10
3. New Electric Theatre
4. "Advertisements", Oracle Theatre (Ogden)
5. "Oracle Theatre Company Formed", Ogden Standard Examiner, 16 September 1911, page 8
6. "Notice", Ogden Standard Examiner, 16 November 1914, page 5
7. "Cozy Theatre Now Open", Ogden Standard Examiner, 10 May 1917, page 4
8. "Latest Equipment in Cozy, Rex and Lyceum", Ogden Standard Examiner, 24 October 1920, page 13
9. "A. M. Miller Buys Building", Ogden Standard Examiner, 23 May 1923, page 12
10. "Cozy Theatre to Pass Out", Ogden Standard Examiner, 14 May 1925, page 8
11. "Rent Miscellaneous", Ogden Standard Examiner, 15 May 1925, page 13
12. "Given Permit", Ogden Standard Examiner, 4 June 1925, page 7
13. "Cozy Theatre to be Reopened", Ogden Standard Examiner, 29 September 1929, page 16