This c. 1920 photo of Main Street in Machias shows a busy downtown. Although the horse watering trough still stands at the intersection, automobiles dominate the commercial district. The large building with the Mansard roof on the right is the Phoenix Opera House, which had commercial establishments on the ground floor. Its listing in the 1913-1914 Cahn Leighton Official Theatrical Guide reports the second-floor hall had a seating capacity of 430, with 150 seats in the balcony. The Phoenix showed live entertainment as well as motion pictures. On January 23, 1927 the building burned to the ground.
The other buildings along Main Street are an assortment of the many establishments doing business in the community. It has been reported that at one time over 45 stores lined Main Street. The buildings on the left are now gone as far as the Customs House, which is now part of the bank.
Caption information from Valdine Atwood