Capitol Theater

(inside the Maytag Hotel building)
116 First Street North
Newton, IA 50208

Builder: Robert-Morton Organ Co., 1927.
Manuals: 2
Ranks: Unknown
Action: Electro-pneumatic

Notes: The Historic Capitol Theatre is located in the Hotel Maytag Building on First Street on the Square in Downtown Newton. It was built in 1927 by Fred Maytag who was the founder of the Maytag Washing Machine Company. At that time the theatre was considered to be one of the largest in Iowa with a total of 995 seats. George Hundling was hired by Maytag to run the Capitol, and back in those days “talking” pictures didn’t exist, so the Hundling Family Orchestra provided music for movies shown at that time. George's son Dorman Hundling played clarinet, son Lloyd played trumpet, daughter Carol played violin, daughter Lois played the organ and piano, and George played cello, and his wife, Helen, played the xylophone.

 information from Dan Clayton.
From Dan Clayton: I worked at the Capitol Theatre as a projectionist during high school & college in the early 1970s. The long-time owner and manager, Dorman Hundling, told me the organ's pipes were removed and sold during a World War II scrap metal drive. The console, windchests and blower may also have been removed at that time.

Some of the copper console wire could not be pulled out of the conduit, and remained visible near the filled-in orchestra pit. The organ chambers still had pencil layout marks showing where wall-mounted organ components had been located. Otherwise the chambers contained nothing but decades of dead storage.

David L. Junchen's Encyclopedia of the American Theater Organ. Organ Historical Society as of 2015.