The Brauntex Theatre first opened in downtown New Braunfels in January 1942. Pearl Harbor had just been attacked, and the United States was at war. Patrons needed a place where they could attempt to ease their worry of loved ones in the war and catch up on the status of the war. It premiered with "The Birth of the Blues", starring Bing Crosby. At the time there were many other operational theaters in the city, but when the state-of-the-art Brauntex Theatre opened, it was the best. A major fire in one of the other downtown theaters, the Palace, either just before or just after the Brauntex opened, made the new theater an even more welcome addition to the city. The Griffith Company owned the theater. Its design was copied from an earlier Griffith theater in New Cordell, Oklahoma, the Washita Theater. The old theater was an important part of downtown New Braunfels for fifty years. Many members of the staff recalls many highlights of the early movie operations such as the time that Pedro Gonzalez appeared while filming the John Wayne classic, The Alamo. The theater was integrated during the 1960s. After integration patrons could sit anywhere in the theater; 40 cents upstairs or 50 cents downstairs.
January 3rd, 2019
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