Memorabilia highlights Turnage history
Since its construction in 1913, the Turnage Theatre has been a hub of art and culture for Washington and Beaufort County. From the silent film era of the theater’s vaudeville days to its role today as home of Arts of the Pamlico, the building is steeped in history, and a growing collection of theater memorabilia seeks to preserve that legacy.
“We are creating a theater memorabilia museum using the artifacts we have here at the Turnage Theatre and that have been donated,” explained AOP Executive Director Debra Torrence.
From antique projectors and classic movie posters to historic photographs and items from the theater’s 2007 grand reopening, each piece in the collection represents a particular time in the theater’s past.
“It gives us the ability to share art from different time periods, how art has evolved, how movies have evolved, how theater has evolved and how we take from what we’ve done and build on it to become a rich art destination,” Torrence said. “To me, it’s the foundation of this building and the foundation of arts in this community. To be able to share that in a way that celebrates it and preserves it, that’s what we’re hoping to do.”
In addition, AOP has also received a grant from the North Carolina Humanities Council to record oral histories of local people’s experiences at the theater. Anyone interested in participating or donating old Turnage memorabilia, can contact AOP at 252-946-2504.