Crawford County, Pennsylvania

History & Biography

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Located in the Cullum Block, corner of Water and Chestnut streets, is to be one of the institutions of the city.  The following description of it is taken from THE MEADVILLE DAILY REPUBLICAN, of July 20, 1869 :  

    We congratulate the people of Meadville in general, and all public singers, lecturers and theatrical artists who may travel this way, in particular, on the rapidly approaching completion of a new and commodious hall.  It has long been one of the crying evils of our city that we have had no suitable place for public concerts, lectures, theatrical performances, &c., and this fact has given us so bad a reputation abroad that it has been almost impossible to have anything of the kind here above mediocrity.  But thanks to the enterprising spirit of Messrs. John and G. C. Porter and Daniel Fowler, the proprietors of the Cullum Block, the interior of the establishment has been converted into a spacious audience chamber, capable of seating twelve hundred persons, and when fully finished and furnished, will be known as the “Meadville Opera House.” It includes the entire centre of the building, extending from the second floor through the second, third and fourth stories to the roof; being there surmounted by a cupola, which is adapted to the double purpose of ventilation and the admission of light.  The Opera House will have all the appliances and conveniences of a first class theatre building.  The stage is built on the most improved plan, is very commodious, measuring 34 by 60 feet, and will be well furnished with beautiful scenery.  Over the parquette and dress circle two large galleries have been erected each extending around the hall in circular form.  Elegant opera chairs are being made in New York with which to seat the entire house, at a cost of over $4,000.  On either side of the stage two private boxes, one above the other, are being built.  

    The arrangement of the parquette, dress circle and galleries is so admirable that a complete view of the stage may be had from every seat in the house.  

    The ceiling is to be handsomely ornamented with fresco work, the cost of which alone will reach $4,500.  In addition to this, and what is probably

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