One of the most effective ways of updating a motion picture theater was to change its marquee, especially in the 1930s and later. Since the prime time for a theater was in the evening, the lighted marquee in many cases “became” the building. The name of the theater could be seen up and down the street, and as one neared it, the viewer was informed as to what movie was currently showing. The marquee of the Capitol Theater in Hartley dates from the late 1930s. It was applied to a two-story nondescript brick building. The two wedge sides of this marquee bear the theater's name in horizontal modern letters. The end of the marquee has a vertical pattern of V's and a stack of horizontal disks in the center. All of this, together with its neon lights and banks of incandescent lights, conveyed to the citizens of Hartley that the modern age was coming, if it wasn't here at this very moment. The theater is situated at the northwest corner of South Central and Second streets.
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