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Meet Your Neighbors

Marvin F. Iuen

Marvin Iuen
                          with his son TroyThe Iuen family are descendants of Master Masons, who originated in Austria, migrated to France, then to New York and finally settled in Ohio.

 In 1943, Marvin's father, who was a contractor in Ohio, moved his family to south Florida and began working at Broward Marine. "At that time", says Marvin, "Wilton Manors did not have a bridge at 26th Street. You had to drive through the water on a dirt road. There were just farms with string beans and tomatoes on the east side of Wilton Manors."

He recalled that, "You could build one house a year without a license. So my father and his buddy began building a house a year in Lauderdale By the Sea. They built about 5 homes, and then became licensed and formed a company calling it Iuen & Clenin. " Clenin eventually became a building inspector for Wilton Manors.

Marvin Iuen served in the US Coast Guard, and was stationed in New Orleans. When he got out of the service in June of 1954, he joined his father and began building homes. The 26th Street bridge to Wilton Manors was constructed in 1952. However, Wilton Manors was still a little on the wild side, and he recalled having an encounter with a six foot rattlesnake as he was working on one of the houses located behind the current Board of Realtors. "That snake jumped right out at me as I was working. It had 11 rattles and a button" says Marvin," I had to kill it with a shovel!"

Mavin brought his bride, Alice, to a home he built for her near Stranahan High School. At that time it was a rural area, and their boys, Troy, Mark and Todd, grew up playing in the woods that is now I-95. 

His son Troy says, "Dad lived in South Florida since the age of 12.  He saw how this area grew from a small town to the huge metropolis that it is today. He can remember when there was very little development west of 441. Today development extends west almost to the Everglades. With our great climate it was only a matter of time before the word would get out to all the northerners.

Perhaps, this was a good thing, as it gave Dad the opportunity to provide housing to the many new arrivals. With his father and my uncle, Dad kept the construction business in the family, building 2 to 3 houses a year. Most of those houses were built in Eastern Wilton Manors. For one house that Dad built, he drew the floor plan to fit some fancy Oriental rugs. He also built warehouses in Oakland Park, along with some offices and apartments.

Before my parents were married, Dad drew the plans for his first house, made a scale model, took a picture of it and presented that to Mom hoping she would accompany him to Florida for the rest of her life.  Then, he built the “dream house” and many other houses to fulfill other people's dreams .

 I can remember helping him part time on some of those projects. Back then he would do it all, concrete, framing, trusses and landscaping.  He built additions to my house and my brother’s house and also helped with my new house here in Wilton Manors. To this day, I don't think I've ever seen a harder worker than my Dad."

Marvin eventually took over the business from his father and constructed many of the homes in our neighborhood. In 1969 he moved his family into a new home he built for them in Wilton Manors, where he and his wife, Alice, still reside.

An avid fisherman, Marvin is shown above cleaning his catch with his son Troy.  Troy also lives in Wilton Manors with his wife Monique, who designed the Wilton Manors East neighborhood logo for our web site. When he is not fishing, Troy operates Action Crane.

Marvin was able to identify 28 of the many homes he was involved with building in East Wilton Manors.  Yours might be one of them!

NE 15th Terrace 2213 2206 2207 2224 2142 2201
NE 16th Avenue 2125 2131 2137 2318    
NE 17th Avenue 2840 2848        
NE 17th Terrace 2301 2309 2200 2701    
NE 18th Avenue 2108          
NE 18th Terrace 2808          
NE 24th Street 1709          
NE 27th Drive 1716 1738 1812 2173    
NE 27th Street 1818 1825        
NE 28th Street 1725 1737 2733      

Map ofEast Wilton Manors
To view a larger map click on the map - it will open a new window with a larger map



Meet Your Neighbors
If you have a story about one of our ENA members, please send it to us and we will be happy to publish it on the website. Email:  Neighbors@wiltonmanors-ena.org