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Source: Cinema Treasures
The Temple Theatre was considered Howell’s first movie theatre. It operated much of its existence at 211 E. Grand River Avenue though operated in two other locations for brief periods of time. The Temple Theatre opened July 7, 1909. In 1920, it played the film, “The Rich Slave” which was shot in Howell.
The theatre was modernized several times including the installation of a $7,000 Bartola organ in 1921. Owner Vernon Locey announced plans to replace the Temple Theatre with the Livingston Theatre with sound. But another interest, Schulte Amusements, built the Howell Theatre ending Locey’s plans.
Before the Howell Theatre opened, a fire closed the Temple Theatre briefly in January 1928. In March of 1928, it was hit by another fire. Operator Vernon Locey rebranded the location as the Rex Theatre April 6, 1928 as the discount movie location. In October Schulte bought the Rex Theatre closing it as the new Howell Theatre opened a block away on December 11, 1929. The former theatre became an auto service garage.