AKA: Cort's New Standard Theater, Pioneer Square, Seattle, WA

Structure Type: built works - performing arts structures - theatres

Designers: [unspecified]

Dates: constructed 1889

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South Washington Street and 2nd Avenue South
Pioneer Square, Seattle, WA 98104

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Cort's Standard Theatre #4 occupied the southeast corner of South Washington Street and South 2nd Avenue in 1891.

Building History

Seattle's disastrous fire of 06/06/1889 wiped out 20 blocks of the city's central business district, requiring impresario John Cort (1859-1929) to build his fourth Standard Theatre which opened in 11/1889. This theatre operated from 11/1889-1894, but was shuttered due to the serious Depression of 1893 which cut discretionary income spent on entertainment. Most Seattle theatres closed during the period 1894-1897. Cort, like almost all of his colleagues, withdrew from Seattle, but returned when news spread of Klondike Gold after 07/17/1897. With prosperity returning to Seattle, he resumed operations of the "New Standard Theatre" c. 1898 and operated until 1904. In this buoyant, new economic climate in 02/1898, Cort announced his intention to open an ambitious, stately new venue--Cort's Grand Opera House--offering high-class dramatic and musical productions. (The name "opera house" usually suggested the grand cultural aspirations of its owner.) The Grand Opera House opened in 1900. (See "Eugene Clinton Elliott, A History of Variety-Vaudeville in Seattle from the Beginning to 1914, Appendix I, [Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1944], p.66.)

Building Notes

John Cort's Standard Theatre #4 (aka Cort's New Standard Theatre) was located on the southeast corner of South Washington Street and South 2nd Avenue. (See R.L. Polk's Seattle City Directory, 1893, p. 413.)


PCAD id: 18440