Sublett Hall

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Sublett Hall was a public meeting hall and playhouse located at 2011½ & 2013½ 2nd Avenue North.

The 417-seat hall was conceived and constructed in 1872 by fresco painter and building supplier Frank O'Brien. He leased the space above a mercantile store and hired cabinet maker Edward Erswell to construct a stage, then painted the scenery himself. The hall was named in honor of Major Joseph M. Sublett of Mississippi, a backer of the project. O'Brien managed the theater for its first two seasons.

The hall was later operated by the German Society of Birmingham. It hosted meetings of the 1874 Alabama Press Association convention and the organizational meetings of First Christian Church. It hosted frequent performances by the Birmingham Thespian Corps and Grambs' Military Band. In 1875 it was also used as Jefferson County's temporary seat of justice during construction of a new courthouse building.

Sublett Hall ceased serving as a theater after the 1881-1882 season and the opening of O'Brien's Opera House. The space was still used for meetings.

In 1884 it was owned by F. M. Irion, and was used as the armory for the Birmingham Rifles and Birmingham Artillery Company, as well as for meetings of the Esmeralda Club. A year later it hosted a Sunday School organized by the ladies of First Christian Church.

Notable events