Information for this tour was contributed by American Treasures.
The Newberry was built in 1910 to house township officials, the local Masonic Lodge, and a beautiful opera house with balcony, orchestra pit and under-stage dressing rooms. The Theater exudes a simple elegance that captures the area’s important role in America’s westward expansion, with crystal-clear acoustics and excellent sight lines from every seat. The Newberry showcased traveling vaudeville troupes, silent films and school plays until the stage went dark in 1947. The theater remained silent until the fall of 2007 when the current owner re-opened this rare, rural American treasure to the public. From 1910 through 1997, the office floor above the theater housed various township offices and while the timline is unclear, the Masonic Lodge moved to a new location some time before 1985. First floor rooms that formerly housed the Theater offices are now in use by a photographer on one side and set up for catering or use as an individual shop on the other.
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