Curran Theater – SF History Center
The Curran Theater was originally built in 1922 off Union Square. In November 1933, a young ruffian named Eddie decided to go on a "shopping spree", holding up different shops and cash registers around San Francisco, because he wanted money to impress his new girlfriend.
Before a performance of Show Boat, Eddie approached the Curran box office and pointed his gun through the bars of the window demanding money. On the other side was 25 year old Hewlett Tarr who was supporting himself and his single mother by working at the Curran. Some say Eddie pulled the trigger without a word, others say he was bumped by the person behind him in line. But Eddie said the gun caught on the bars of the window and accidentally went off. Whatever happened, it sent a bullet straight into Hewlett’s heart. He stumbled down the stairs behind him and died, just two weeks before he was supposed to get married.
Eddie Anderson received the death sentence, hanging at San Quentin, after only 7 hours of deliberation. The fastest on record in SF at the time.
Many say, Hewlett Tarr still “works” at the Curran. Audiences report seeing him in the large mirror that once stood in the lobby next to the box office. Others say Hewlett Tar still roams the halls and back corridors of the theater, checking in with actors, tipping his cap as you walk by, because as we all know, the show must go on...
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