Kansas City, MO Coates Opera House Fire, Jan 1901

Coates Opera House Coates Opera House After Fire


Coates Opera House a Complete Loss -- "L'Aiglon" Was Booked for Monday.

Kansas City, Mo., Jan. 31 -- Fire late to-night destroyed the Coates Opera House, the principal theatre of Kansas City, situated at Tenth Street and Broadway, and occupying a detached building. WALKER WHITESIDE and his company were playing "Heart and Sword" in the house, and had just concluded the evening performance, when some actors discovered that the building was afire, the flames enveloping the whole rear part of the theatre in a few moments. The company lost their wardrobes and scenery, being obliged to flee from their dressing roms[sic].
The firemen were helpless to check the flames, and directed their chief attention to the Coates Hotel, diagonally across the street, the largest hotel in the city. Wind blew great showers of cinders upon the hotel. The guests were notified of their danger, and some left the house, but it was not damaged.
At 12:15 o'clock the theatre block was a total wreck, but still blazing. No one was injured. The audience had left the theatre only five minutes before the fire was discovered. The building was valued at between $125,000 and $150,000, but was insured for much less. It was one of the oldest and best known theatres in the West.
BERNHARDT and COQUELIN were to have played "L'Aiglon" in the theatre next Monday night, and there was an extraordinary sale of seats to-day, hundreds of people having stood in line all night to be ready when the box office opened this morning. The house was "sold out" in a few minutes.

The New York Times New York 1901-02-01