Molden Funeral Chapel and Cremation Service
133 Otter Street
Bristol, PA 19007
Telephone: (215) 788-6612
The firm was founded by Harry Molden (1860-1940), who emigrated from Germany as a young man during the 1800’s. Following his marriage to Katie Betz, he and his wife settled on Bath Street. Harry supported his family by working as a barber and paperhanger, which he continued on a part-time basis after embarking on a career in funeral service.
The February 24, 1884 issue of the Bristol Observer announced that “Harry J. Molden, 542 – 544 Bath Street has resumed the Undertaking business, a profession he followed some years ago. He learned the business in Germany, and attending the college of Philadelphia to complete his knowledge of the embalming process.”
In 1910 he joined in the business by his oldest son, George (1888-1972), who became licensed after attending Eckels College of Embalming in Philadelphia. It was necessary for him to supplement his income, too, and he did this by driving a horse – drawn taxi.
During the early part of the 1900’s in our country, funerals were usually conducted from the home of the deceased. Gradually a trend was starting to have the undertaker use his own home, and Harry did this from his residence on Bath Street.
Then in 1938 something very significant happened. The Moldens decided to purchase a lot on Otter Street and construct a new facility, which included a full chapel, waiting room, office space and rest rooms. This was probably the first building in the area to be constructed specifically for use as a funeral home.
Under George’s energetic leadership and with the advantage of a new facility, the business continued to expand to serve the surrounding communities of Bristol Township, Tullytown, Croydon, and Bensalem.
George, Jr. joined his father in the business in 1950 following his graduation from Ursinus College and Dolans School of Mortuary Science. Both men worked very hard and within the 10 year period from 1958-1968, the building needed two additions; the first to add a display room for caskets and a modern preparation area, and the second to increase the size of the size of the public gathering area.
As the business expanded to the outlying areas, there was a greater need for additional parking. The firm met this need by purchasing the adjoining property and then employed the services of a professional landscaper to beautify the entire property.
The family tradition continued when in 1982 the fourth Molden, Christopher, became licensed as a funeral director following his graduation from Susquehanna University and the American Academy McAllister Institute in New York.
David L. Hernandez Jr, funeral director and Christopher Molden, the fourth generation of family directors, leas the staff comprised of Karen Lamb, Lisa Ruiz, Antonio AliBocas and A staff of this size provides the manpower needed to assure 24 hour service.
In response to meeting the needs of the ever-changing requirements of both the families we serve and the state and federal agencies, the firm undertook major capital improvements during this centennial year. With the 2,200 square foot addition, we now have:
- A second chapel
- Increased accessibility for handicapped persons
- More spacious public areas
- A private room for making arrangements
- Enlarged office space, including a private office
- Large, well-appointed rest rooms