Listed on the national register for historic places, the Woodward Opera House is situated in the heart of Mount Vernon's Central Business District. This national landmark invites you to step back in time to the 1800s and experience the history! While viewing the Woodward, imagine what it must have been like to perform here. Take in the 19th century architecture, admire the original paintings still hanging on the walls, and if you listen quietly, you may hear a fiddle or banjo picking out a familiar tune.
The Woodward Opera House is tied closely with local musician Dan Emmett who is known for his world famous song Dixie, as well as Old Dan Tucker and Turkey in the Straw. Another landmark performance that occurred at the Woodward was the first motion picture shown in Knox County during 1897-98. The Woodward Theater closed in the mid-1920s.
Current efforts to restore The Woodward began in the mid 1970s. A real focus on the project came when the Knox Performing Arts Coalition, Inc. was formed in 1994. A business plan was developed and grant money was sought. In 1997, a second entity was created, The Woodward Development Corporation, to facilitate the purchase and management at the Woodward building. The building was purchased in 1998 and is currently in a restoration phase.
Come visit us in Mount Vernon, Ohio