Skip to content

THEN & NOW: When King's Music Hall burned to the ground

The music hall burned in November 1909 under the most suspicious and sensational of circumstances

This ongoing series from Deb Exel at the Barrie Historical Archive shows old photos from the collection and one from the present day. 

King’s Music Hall Fire 

In 1891, on the western side of post office square, now Meridian Place, Nathaniel King built his Music Hall and Gazette office, in what was known as the King Block, or Music Hall Block.

He later put this this property up for sale, described in the Jan. 28, 1897 of the Northern Advance as...

Barrie Music Hall

The best business situation. Full size 73-by-80, auditorium 50-by-56, stage 24-by-50; gallery on three sides; 10 sets first-class scenery; drop curtain 26-by-16; seating capacity 900-1,000, elevated chair seats, heated by hot air, lighted by gas and electricity, four dressing rooms, acoustics perfect. Lowest terms by day, week or share. Rent to local churches, societies or private parties $6.00. Address, N. King, Music Hall, Barrie , Ont., Can.

The music hall burned in November 1909 under the most suspicious and sensational of circumstances, described in a thrilling Remember This column.

Most folks today would remember this site for the Wilson Building and the location of the Bank of Montreal for many years.

This old-timer is not done yet, however, and is readying for its next life overlooking a town square.

The Barrie Historical Archive will be conducting a new, interactive heritage walking tour called ‘They Rushed In’, a main street stroll that highlights some of the stories of the Barrie fire department and heritage locations in the city’s historical downtown core. The tours are Sept. 21 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., starting at Barrie Fire Hall No. 1, located at 155 Dunlop St. W., and led by local historian, writer and storyteller Mary Harris.