Antonio Esposito
Morris Co. Up

Source: History Morris County New Jersey, Volume II, Lewis Publishing Co., 1914

Energy, enterprise and perseverance have been the main attributes in the success which has attended the well directed efforts of Antonio ESPOSITO, proprietor and manager of the Palace Theatre, located on Speedwell avenue, Morristown, erected in 1910 and opened in that year, which is considered one of the finest miniature playhouses in the State of New Jersey, having a seating capacity of 700, and equipped with everything needful for the comfort, convenience and safety of its numerous patrons.

Antonio ESPOSITO was born in Sorrento, Italy, December 15, 1866, son of Salvator and Lucia (MARISCA) ESPOSITO, natives of Italy, where they spent their entire lives, performing the various tasks allotted to them in a manner calculated to win the respect of all with whom they were brought in contact, and rearing their children to lives of useful endeavor and righteous living, all the members of their family being in prosperous circumstances, highly esteemed by their fellowmen. In 1881 Antonio ESPOSITO left his native land to seek a home in the United States, where he considered the advantages for earning a livelihood were greater, and upon his arrival here located in Brooklyn, New York, where he secured employment in a furniture establishment, performing his work to the best of his ability. His next employment was in the carpentering trade, later in the fruit business, and in 1899 he went to the Argentine Republic, the largest of the Spanish-American republics, lying between the Andes and the South Atlantic, and there assumed charge of the carpentry work for a large company, his services proving entirely satisfactory to his superiors. He then traveled extensively throughout the United States, his journeys taking him through many States, and in this manner gained a wide and varied experience which has proven valuable to him in the management of his present business, giving him a thorough knowledge of men and affairs in general not obtainable in any other way. Upon settling down to a quiet routine after his travels, he gave his attention to the amusement business, and with the shows under his control visited the Buffalo Exposition, Omaha Exposition, and other affairs of a like nature, all of which were successful from a pecuniary point of view. In 1907 he located in Morristown, New Jersey, and there established a moving picture business on Park Place, which he successfully conducted for about two and a half years, and then opened his present place of amusement, the Palace Theatre, which is a remunerative source of income. During the winter season, in addition to moving pictures, which are of a high class, there is a vaudeville performance, which is the best that can be obtained, nothing of an obnoxious character being allowed on the boards, thus insuring to the ladies and children who patronize it a clean show in every way with nothing offensive to their senses or morals, and during the summer season, in addition to moving pictures, there is a stock company which furnishes a fine repertoire of the best plays portrayed in an excellent manner. This brief statement of facts proves conclusively that the Palace Theatre is conducted on the best known lines, and is worthy the patronage of the better class of residents, the constant aim of the proprietor being to make it rank among the leading amusement places of the county. Mr. ESPOSITO is now, October, 1913, beginning the erection of a new and more commodious play house to be located immediately in the rear of his present play house, it will have a seating capacity of 1,641 and standing room for 400 more. The theatre will be constructed along the lines the most modern, and where the best talent can appear and feel at home. It will be called the Morris Theatre.

Mr. ESPOSITO married, in New York, in February, 1889, Elizabeth GARGIULO, born in Italy in 1872, daughter of Salvatore and Philomina GARGIULO. Children: Salvator and Ralph. Mr. and Mrs. ESPOSITO are communicants of the Catholic church, and he is connected with a number of Italian societies, in which he is prominent and active, which have for their object the betterment and uplift of the natives of Italy who seek a home on this side of the Atlantic Ocean, their name being legion.

Transcribed by John Cresseveur

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