SCS Alumni Newsletter Heading
 Volume V Issue I Spring - 2002 
Smalley's Theatre

April, 1922 was a notable month for Sidney. Troop C moved from their old quarters in the Central House Block to the barracks on Hillcrest ( site of the present high school) and on April 15th excavation work for Sidney's moving picture theatre began.

In fact, the theatre was built because one of the requirements for having Troop C, of the NYS Police, locate in Sidney was that there be a suitable place of entertainment where the Troop would be stationed.

The movie theatre was originally built by David Melnick, but in September of 1922 he sold the theatre to William Smalley, of Cooperstown who immediately re christened it Smalley's Theatre. It joined the Smalley's chain, with theatres in Cooperstown, Hartwick, Richfield Springs, Worcester and two in Stamford. The first performance (September 21, 1922) featured Norma Talmadge in "Smilin' Through" with "Select News" and a "Special Comedy". There were 800 in the audience. The first "talkie premiered in 1929.

Smalley's familiar marquee was a fixture for many years on Main St. in Sidney and the films there entertained generations of area residents. Sadly, the theatre has been out of business for several years and the building is being partially torn down and will house a new business. The Alumni Auction will have available for sale some souvenirs and artifacts from the old theatre. Don't miss the opportunity to bid on a piece of your history!