“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Summit in Union County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Summit Opera House

Summit Opera House Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By R. C., August 14, 2010
1. Summit Opera House Marker
Inscription.  The building on this site was designed in 1893 for the Women's Temperance Union by architect Theodore Mead, Jr. In return for title to the property, Civil War veteran Joel G. Van Cise completed the construction and provided the W.C.T.U. with a local headquarters. He also used the site as a rostrum when he ran for U.S. President on the Prohibition Party ticket.

The building originally housed shops on the ground level. Upstairs, an 800-seat stage hall featured Vaudeville and became Summit's very first movie house. The rear section contained a coffee shop, reading rooms, the W.C.T.U. meeting hall, and resort-quality sleeping rooms. The basement boasted sixty-foot bowling alleys.

The structure's many names have included:
Temperance Hall and Union Hall (1893)
Williard Hall & Howard Hall (1894)
The Van Cise Bldg, followed by the Nore Lyrical "Summit Opera House." In 1920, the Overlook Masonic Lodge inserted a full third level and dubbed it "Masonic Hall." The building has also enjoyed great popularity for its restaurants:
The Blue Lantern Tea Room (1920-1948)
The New Hampshire House (1948-1984)
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Winberie Est. 1985
Erected 1985 by Ryder Family.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: EntertainmentFraternal or Sororal OrganizationsNotable Buildings. A significant historical year for this entry is 1893.
Location. 40° 43.122′ N, 74° 21.684′ W. Marker is in Summit, New Jersey, in Union County. Marker is on 2 Kent Place Blvd. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Summit NJ 07901, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Marjorie Cranstoun Jefferson (approx. 0.3 miles away); Summit Playhouse (approx. 0.3 miles away); Rahway Valley Railroad (approx. 0.6 miles away); Signal Beacon and the “Old Sow” (approx. 0.8 miles away); Florence Spearing Randolph (approx. one mile away); Wallace Chapel A.M.E. Zion Church (approx. one mile away); Bonnel Town - Chatham (approx. 1.2 miles away); Briant Pond Park (approx. 1.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Summit.
Summit Opera House image. Click for full size.
Photographed By R. C., August 14, 2010
2. Summit Opera House
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on August 20, 2010, by R. C. of College Station, Texas. This page has been viewed 1,232 times since then and 74 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on August 20, 2010, by R. C. of College Station, Texas. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 6, 2023