In The Beginning...

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The Rachlin Family    Welcome to The Camp Shoshana of Highland Mills, NY website. Those of you who are part of the Camp Shoshana legacy will surely enjoy browsing the photo pages, reading and making entries to the guestbook, and renewing friendships via e-mail from the contact page. This page is all about Sue and Harry, Ellen and Andrew, Grandma and Grandpa Woods, (and Spot the dog) and the camp we all loved that was eponymously named Shoshana. Is this a Native American moniker? Wasn't there a Shoshone tribe? And didn't we have cardboard cutout feathered headdresses with the Shoshana name emblazoned across the front? Why yes we did. But no, Shoshana is simply Sue's Hebrew name. Did anyone not know this? Perhaps some of you didn't.
Construction(The following is an excerpt - albeit slightly edited and updated - from the 1978/25th Anniversary booklet that Sue had put together. It is written in her voice).    Our story begins in 1953 when Harry, newly discharged from the service (remember the footlocker in the camphouse that said "H. Rachlin PFC"?) embarked on a teaching career. We had been married for three years and were faced with the reality that as school teachers we would have security but not affluence. Reenforced by a small bank account we purchased a small piece of land in Highland Mills. Why Highland Mills? Back in the '40s Harry and I met while we were counselors at Camp Kinderwelt (translated - Children's World) on Ridge Road. We proceeded to clear the land, erect a small building and furnish it with the basic equipment needed to begin a day camp for children.
Harry   The first summer we enrolled 23 children, the second summer 45, and the following year 78. As our reputation grew so did our enrollment. In those earlier years our clientele was mostly from the bungalow colonies. As the area changed and the colonies disappeared we started to draw more and more from the year 'round residents. Our philosophy was simple: concentrate our efforts on the individual child, help him/her grow and develop into an independent and happy child.
The Pool    In 1958 we expanded the campus by adding the Little House. In 1960, when Ellen was born, we added our apartment and the office. In 1961 we built my parents' cottage. In 1963, the year after Andrew was born, we enlarged the camphouse and added the coolroom and the swimming pool. In the early 1970s we purchased the crafthouse. My mother (Grandma Woods), of blessed memory, referred to me as the "Jennie Grossinger of Highland Mills."
Camphouse    Through all the years of expansion and growth, we were fortunate to have touched the lives of thousands of youngsters. Several counselors met at our camp with resulting marriages. Many have kept in touch over the years and allowed us to share with them their joys and sorrows, their successes and failures. And, whenever they dropped in to visit, we almost always remembered who they are. Our live's were also enriched by the many friendships that developed through the years...some that are still going strong after almost 50 years.
      --Susan Rachlin

Faceboook Also Visit Us On Facebook
·contact is where you find e-mail addresses for former campers and staff.
·guestbook is where you can see shared memories (August 2001-August 2008). We now use Facebook as our message board
·see us now is for recent photos of former campers and staff.
·camphouse has a selection of photos from Sue's archive and picture galleries from former campers and staff.
·staff/group photos + video are just that from various years and ages.
·songbook has lyrics from your favorite camp songs.
·the map interactively tours the campus.

·All inquiries, problems, etc. pertaining to this site should go to - thanks Steve Kolodny