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Paramount Theater

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1930, David S. Castle Co.; 1987 rehabilitated, Killis Almond and Associates. 352 Cypress St.

The Paramount, another H. O. Wooten development, was a part of the adjacent Wooten Hotel project (SB23), and Castle incorporated the same buff brick he used on the hotel for the theater’s flat facade. Across the top of the facade is a distinctive horizontal terra-cotta band divided into eight panels by shallow piers topped with finials. Each panel has a polychrome shield or a roundel against a blue background with embracing tendrils. Three tall blind windows joined with spiral columns stand in the center of the facade just above the marquee. The deteriorated marquee and vertical sign, with animated neon lighting, were reconstructed. The original Spanish-Moorish interior with its starry night-sky ceiling is intact. The theater was the first air-conditioned building in Abilene. Opening night in May 1930 featured Safety in Numbers with Carole Lombard. The Paramount closed in 1979. The Abilene Preservation League purchased the property in 1980, and it was rehabilitated in 1987 as a venue for films, concerts, opera, dance, and meetings.

Three blocks north of the Paramount and occupying a three-block site at 1100 N. 6th Street is the Abilene Civic Center (1970, Boone and Pope). A bulky pavilion containing an exhibition hall and conference center, its most visible feature is the Cor-Ten steel-sheathed superstructure of the 2,142-seat auditorium.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Paramount Theater", [Abilene, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 307-308.

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