John H. Tureman builds an opera house
“Mrs. M.J. Tureman Dead. Prominent Virginia Woman Died in California. Wife of Builder of Tureman Opera House.” Virginia Gazette, Feb. 21, 1913. Mary Jane Tureman’s obituary marked the end of a chapter that had begun 30 years earlier.
In the second half of the 19th century, an opera house was a symbol of community pride, sophistication, culture, and civilized behavior.
Outside of major cities, opera houses of those times were not erected as a theater for the grand works of such classical giants as Mozart, Puccini and Berloiz. Not at all! These theaters were intended to provide a stage for popular entertainment.