The Paramount Theater
Hammond, Indiana 
1930 - 1981





The Paramount Theatre opened around 1930, just a couple blocks up Hohman Avenue from the grandiose Parthenon Theatre, and could seat almost 2000.

Though not as ornate as the Parthenon or the State, the Paramount was nonetheless just as popular, and featured not just motion pictures but live stage shows, as late as the mid-50s.

The Paramount featured its own house orchestra, as well as an army of ushers and uniformed doormen who greeted patrons like royalty.

Over the years, many celebrities graced the Paramount's stage, among them, Minnie Pearl, Pat Boone, and the Benny Goodman Band.

After falling into disrepair, the Paramount was shuttered in 1981, and has since been razed, recently replaced by Hammond's brand-new Federal Courthouse Building.

Source: Cinema Treasures

The Paramount Theater in Hammond
never looked quite as good as this.

But it is a fine example of the quality and decor on display in a Parmount Theater.




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  I worked for a short time at the Paramount in the late 70s. I remember showing Coma. After closing I used to spend hours exploring the theater. There were a lot of leftovers from when the theater was in her prime. There were underground dressing rooms and call boards for the live acts. I spent so much time exploring because I had been told that Al Capone had once owned the theater and had used it as a distribution hub for liquor during prohibition. There were tunnels running under Hohman Ave that ran to storefronts where the booze was supposed to have been sold out of. This was around the time that Geraldo was cracking open Capone's vault in downtown Chicago, so I had it in my mind that I might find some of Capones lost money. I found nothing but a lot of mold and spider webs. It was fun exploring though. The Paramount was a beauty, though, and I wish I had seen her in her prime.
posted by Fred Schiller on Aug 16, 2004 at 10:54am






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