Martin Odlen


MARTIN ODLEN was born in Phialdelphia PA in 1916 to Robert & Fannie Odlen. His father had come to America from Russia as a boy in 1908, had already gone into business by 1920, when the family was living at 4031 Poplar Street. By 1930 Robert Odlen brought his family to Camden, where he was the president of the General Iron Works at 407-21 Atlantic Avenue. The company made steel columns and beams to engineers' specifications so that they could be used immediately in building projects. Robert Odlen passed away in 1970.

After graduating from Camden High School in 1934 and Auburn University in 1938, Martin Odlen returned to Camden and went to work in the family business. He married Beatrice Fuhrman in 1941. He served as a Navy Ensign aboard the cruiser USS Marblehead during WWII. 

Martin Odlen returned to Camden after the war, by which time his family was living at 3070 Federal Street in East Camden. He stayed in the family business, and was owner and president until he retired in 1975.

Martin Odlen was active in community affairs, and was especially active in the affairs of Congregation Beth El, on Park Boulevard opposite Farnham Park, of which he was a member. 

He served as president of Beth El from 1963 to 1965 and 1968 to 1970, and was instrumental in moving the congregation out of Camden to its present home on Chapel Avenue in Cherry Hill NJ. 

Martin Odlen passed away on August 3, 2003. He was buried at Crescent Burial Park in Pennsauken NJ

Camden Courier-Post

May 4, 1934


Philadelphia Evening Public Ledger - 1934
Lawrence Bunker - Thomas P. Flaherty - Paul LeBaron Springer
William E. Kelly - Martin Odlen - Joseph R. Guarino - Cramer Street


New York City

May 6, 1944

Click on Image to Enlarge

Martin 'Marty' Odlen

U.S. Navy

Camden, NJ

Ralph Bozorth



Congregation Beth El

William M. Hoffman, Jr.

Ligonier, PA
Professor Emeritus, Rutgers University

Congregation Beth El

Cherry Hill NJ

Camden Courier-Post - August 7, 2003

ODLEN, MARTIN 'MARTY' August 6, 2003. Husband of the late Beatrice (nee Fuhrman) of Atlantic City. Father of Suzin Odlen and Barry (Lisa) Odlen. Brother of Helene Cooperman and Natalie Levin. Grandfather of Shana Odlen and Lauren Odlen.

Marty was a great community leader and a devoted family man. He was owner and president, until his retirement in 1975, of General Iron Works in Camden, NJ. After graduating from Camden High School in 1933 and Auburn University in 1938, her served as a Navy Ensign during WWII. Marty was President of Congregation Beth El in Cherry Hill from 1963 to 1965 and 1968 to 1970; President of Kiwanis International in 1964; a member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary; and a member of Tau Epsilon Phi Fraternity.

He received many honors from various groups including Congregation Beth El, United States Coast Guard Auxiliary, Kellman Academy, State of Israel Bonds, Kiwanis Club, and The Auburn Alumni Association.

Relatives and friends may call Friday beginning 10:00am, Cong. Beth El, 2901 Chapel Ave. W., Cherry Hill, NJ where services will begin at 11:00am. Int. Crescent Burial Park. The family will return to the home of Barry and Lisa Odlen and respectfully request contributions in his memory by made to Congregation Beth El, 2901 Chapel Ave., W., Cherry Hill, NJ 08002

Philadelphia Inquirer - August 8, 2003

Marty Odlen 
Owned Fabricating Firm

Martin "Marty" Odlen, 87, who owned a steel fabricating company in Camden and was active in several Camden County organizations in the 1960s and 1970s, died of a blood disorder Wednesday at his Atlantic City home.

Born in Philadelphia, Mr. Odlen grew up in Camden, where his father, Robert, owned General Iron Works.

He earned a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from Auburn University in Alabama in 1938, then went to work in the family business. During World War II, he served as a Navy ensign aboard the light cruiser USS Marblehead.

He was president and owner of the iron works until he retired to Florida in 1975. The company made steel columns and beams to engineers' specifications so that they could be used immediately in building projects.

Mr. Odlen moved to Atlantic City in 1999 after the death of his wife, the former Beatrice Fuhrman. The couple met in childhood and married in 1941.