In 1904 Judge B.P. Howells contracted with two masons, George Croft and William Dummer and two carpenters, Cyrus Cavanass and Elmer Mecham, to build the Opera House. The masons brought reddish brown rhyolite rock, quarried about three miles east of Oakley for the foundation. The walls of the Opera House were constructed three bricks deep from bricks made at a local brickyard. The theater was finished in 1907 at a cost of $22,000. Judge Howells was an attorney in the Diamond Field Jack trial, a famous incident in the cattle and sheep growers dispute of the late 1800s. He was also a county judge. Howells Opera House now serves as a performing arts center for the town. It is also open to the public each year during the annual spring tour of homes. The Opera House is among those in the National Register as the Oakley Historic District.