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Ritch-Carter-Martin House

NOTE: We have had requests for information on the Ritch-Carter-Martin House on Highway 341 here in Odum. The following is taken from the December 27, 1998 edition of the Press Sentinel. We hope to add pictures of the house in the future.

The Ritch-Carter-Martin House, located on U.S. Highway 341 in Odum, was recently listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The house is still in the family of Joe Wheeler Martin, who passed away December 2. Harolyn Madray, Mr. Martin's stepdaughter, is happy about the recognition.

"That house has always been home to me," she said. "The house was always open, especially at Christmas, and everyone was welcome to come by and see our decorations and have plenty of food and a good time."

Built in 1915, the Ritch-Carter-Martin House is a historic wood-framed, two-story Georgian house constructed in the Neoclassical Revival-style. The house features a two-tier front portico with a triangular pediment. The lower full-width porch is supported by round columns with Tuscan capitals and the second story portion is supported by two sets of triple columns with Tuscan capitals.

Other exterior architectural features include a hipped roof, wooden balustrades located along both porches, decorative wood shingle design in the pediment, trabeated first- and second-story entrances, one-over-one double-hung windows, and brick pier foundation. The interior features classically-inspired mantels, plaster and bead-board ceilings, plaster walls with bead-board wainscoting, wood floors, and five-panel interior doors with transoms. The remaining outbuildings include the 1918 smokehouse and commissary (circa 1915).

The Ritch-Carter-Martin House is significant in architecture as a good example of a Georgian House built in 1915 in the Neoclassical Revival-style. It is one of the oldest remaining two-story houses and the only surviving example of a two-story Neoclassical Revival-style historic residence in Odum. The house is significant in commerce for its use as a boarding house beginning in the 1930s. The second-story rooms were used as boarding rooms until the 1970s.

The National Register is the federal government's official list of historic buildings, structures, sites, objects and districts worthy of preservation. According to Richard Cloues, deputy state historic preservation officer, listing in the National Register recognizes a property's significance and ensures that the property will be taken into account in the planning of federally funded or licensed projects. In addition, owners of income-producing National Register properties may be eligible for rehabilitation tax incentives.

For more information on the National Register and other preservation programs, contact the Historic Preservation Division of the Department of Natural Resources at (404) 656-2840 or visit the web site at