Leon Todd from South Jersey: A History 1624 – 1924

LEON EDGAR TODD—Substantial reasons for Camden’s continuous growth and advancement in recent years, are furnished in the development of the real estate plans of Leon E. Todd, one of the city’s most prominent realtors and builders in South Jersey, whose extensive general brokerage business and building interests have aroused State-wide attention.

A native of Camden, and always a careful observer of the many opportunities that have presented themselves for the city’s expansion, since entering into business on his own account, he has put many of his very practical ideas into successful operation; and as a result, East Camden, his main field of endeavors, took on a new lease of life as far as real estate activity is concerned; and new residential sections were provided, and the increasing population has found pleasant new “Air-Lite” modern built homes. Mr. Todd from the beginning of his business activities has worked directly for and with the people, both in assisting to secure locations and their new homes, and in providing financial ways and means thereto. In the short space of a little over five years, his organization grew to a point of establishing a suburban branch office at No. 29 Kings Highway East, Haddonfield; both offices specializing in all the various departments of the usual insurance, mortgage, building and real estate business. And his organization today is looked upon as one of Camden’s leading brokerage offices. His general interest, also, in all matters that pertain to the welfare of Camden is evidenced in his praiseworthy efforts to be of large service both in peace and in war. Of English ancestry for many generations, he is a son of J. Linwood Todd, a decorator and painter, who was born June 8, 1869, and of Ida May (Fox) Todd, who was born December 4, 1873.

Leon Edgar Todd was born November 22, 1893, in East Camden, and he attended the Garfield Grammar School and the Camden High School, where he graduated with the class of 1912. He then attended Pierce Business College, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, graduating with the class of 1914 and also class of 1915. Ambitious and with a desire to be independent, he worked his way along through school, by selling newspapers, morning and evening, and in employment of a local grocery company. Completing his school work, he was employed in the office of a commission house, later going on the road as a salesman. Later he became office manager and house secretary of the Camden Young Men’s Christian Association, after which he became associated with a Camden real estate firm. In March, 1918, he established his own real estate business, with his offices at his present address. His business outgrew its quarters in 1921, and he now has what is considered the most modern up-to-date real estate office in Camden, the building formerly being occupied by James K. Asay, who had been in the same business thirty years prior. Mr. Todd at once gave his attention to the development of East Camden territory, not only on a brokerage basis, but as a builder of new homes. He has just purchased thirty-three acres from the estate of Edward Dudley where plans are under way to construct five hundred houses, now being completed right in the heart of future Greater Camden.

Mr. Todd was one of the organizers, and is a member of the board of directors of the East End Trust Company, and he was also one of the organizers of five building and loan associations. He is secretary of the Ideal, Cooperative, Dudley and the Public Safety Building & Loan associations. Throughout the World War he was very active, and his offices were at the disposal of a local trust company as a branch during the loan drives.

Mr. Todd is a Republican in politics; and his fraternal affiliations are those of Camden Lodge, in Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and the Encampment; the moose; Knights of the Golden Eagle; Foresters of America; Patriotic Order Sons of America; Lodge No. 293, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks; Shield of Honor; and Artisans. He is a member of the Riverton Country Club; Tavistock Country Club; Camden Club; Kiwanis Club; president, Camden Real Estate Board; member of the New Jersey Association of Real Estate Boards and the National Real Estate Association, and a member of the Camden Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the board of trustees of Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church at East Camden, and on the board of the Homeopathic Hospital.

Mr. Todd married, January 31, 1915, Helen M. Cliver, born October 2, 1893, daughter of George B. Cliver, stationary engineer, and former commodore of the Farragut Sportsmen’s Association, and of Katharine (Tyson) Cliver; and they are the parents of: Harrison L., born April 2, 1916; and Leon E., Jr., born June 30, 1920; another son, Raymond Linwood, died during the influenza epidemic.

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