About Us | HISTORICAL TIMELINE


Summary relative to the early use of Rock Lodge Club NJ property & nearby:

1904
- A.L.A. Himmelwright purchases approximately 41 acres from John & Rachel Predmore for $1200. [Sussex County Hall of Records, Book A10 Page 519]

1905
- A.L.A. Himmelwright purchases 47.45 acres from John A. Pollison & wife for $901. [Sussex County Hall of Records, Book C10, Page 371] He completes the building of the dam. [Sussex Independent 8-18-1905]

1907
- A.L.A. Himmelwright builds the 16 room steam heated stone house and stone garage for $10,200. [Sussex Independent 8-17-1906 & 4-5-1907]

1908
- A.L.A. Himmelwright purchases 66.08 acres from William H. Mase for $439. [Sussex County Hall of Records, Book K10, Page 320] Parcel shown on Mase-Blazure map dated 1897 filed in the county records.

1910
- census indicates A.L.A. Himmelwright is living in Stockholm, NJ with his family and 3 servants.

1911
- son Kenneth Hamlin (B.1897 Newark,NJ) drowns in Rock Lodge pond. According to Ron dePaolo young Kenneth had drawn a local map of the property - a reprint of which is in the collection of Rock Lodge Club.

1914
- A.L.A. Himmelwright purchases 66.08 acres from James Blazure for $400. [Sussex County Hall of Records, Book H11, Page 34] Parcel shown on Mase-Blazure map dated 1897 filed in the county records.

1916
- A.L.A. Himmelwright completes the building of the Bungalow for $12,000. A large structure with single bedrooms, lounge room, drying room, two needle showers, a regulation squash and handball court, and a gentlemen's bathroom . It is heated with a coal furnace. A tennis court is in the rear of the building. [Sussex Independent 7-6-1917]

1917
- Dr. Van Gaasbeek of Sussex, NJ inspects Rock Lodge for potential use as a sanatorium. (Sussex Independent 8-17-1917)

1920
- A.L.A. Himmelwright leases 215 acres to Rock Lodge Health Farm - [Sussex County Hall of Records Deed Liber Z-11, page 64] and forms a trust. The Health Farm is operated by Dr. Francis dePaolo (a chiropractor whom he first met in 1906 when Dr. dePaolo was hiking in the area) and Dr. Benjamin F. Roller ( Dr. B.F. Roller was a physician, surgeon, professional wrestler, and football player). This year the Stockholm municipal building and records destroyed by fire.

1921
- An advertising agency Ernest Lerned Pratt, Inc. was engaged to promote the Rock Lodge Health Farm. [Printers Ink, 9-8-1921, vol 116, page 146]
- Rock Lodge Health Farm advertisements were published in The NY Times 1921 - stock listing?
- The NY Times 8/28/1921 page 94 - Large display advertisement under direction of Dr. B.F. Roller
- The Outlook, an illustrated Weekly Journal of Current Life, Vol 127 Jan-April page 155 - Health Farm under direction of Dr. B.F. Roller
- The Outlook, an illustrated Weekly Journal of Current Life Vol 182. May-Aug page 36 - Health Farm under the direction of Dr. B.F. Roller
- Arts & Decoration magazine - Rock Lodge is under the direction of J. Glenn Rolley of Rolley's Health Studio - advertisement. Rolley's Studio advertised scientific exercise.

1922
- Rock Lodge was under the direction of J. Glenn Rolley of Rolley's Health Studio - advertisement published in 1922 Magazine of Wall Street Advertisements for the Rock Lodge Farm Hotel Stockholm NJ were run in April and May 1922 in at least five different issues of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn, NY newspaper.

1927
- map indicates the property as Lake Sussex Country Club. 1927 Map: Stockholm & Milton Charge, Jersey City district drawn by Arthur Wallace, pastor. A diagram indicating the Lake Sussex Country Club development is in the collection of Rock Lodge Club.

1928
- Dr. William H. Rauchfuss, a well known prominent historian, visits Rock Lodge (Himmelwright's wife Adeline gives him a tour) and publishes an article about his visit in his history column in the January 28, 1928 issue of the Paterson Sunday Chronicle. Himmelwright wrote a letter to Dr. William H. Rauchfuss that appeared in the 1928 proceedings of the the NJ Historical Society regarding the possibility of a French and Indian War fort on his property as told to him by a local resident named John A. Paulison who heard the story from his grandfather and who also owned nearby property.

1931
- Himmelwright's 2nd wife Adeline Dagmar Nielsen dies 2/30/1931. (note: in 1930 she was critically ill and took children Victor & Adeline to Denmark)

1932
- property being used for nudist purposes as depicted in an oil painting by artist Richard Ederheimer which is in the collection of the NJ Historical Society

1934-1942
- Herman Soshinski (a NYC librarian born in Germany) leases the property to operate a nudist camp as the American Gymnosophical Association which he formed in 1930. Early AGA documents are in the collection of Rock Lodge Club.

1936
- A.L.A. Himmelwright dies in NYC. (3/24/1931). Son Victor graduates from Franklin High School. [see Franklin HS yearbook]. Note: A.L.A. Himmelwright's possessions are appraised and auctioned off in 1937, with one of the appraisers being Herbert Irons, the Franklin, NJ police chief)

1939
- Dr. Francis E. dePaolo purchases the property from the Estate for $38,000. [Sussex Hall of Records Book 211, Page 64]

1940
- census shows Herman Soshinski residing at Rock Lodge along with a secretary (34 year old Margaret Seidenstricher from OH and a 63 year old hired hand William Vogel from NY). Victor Himmelwright is living with a family in Franklin and is listed as an orphan on the census.

1942
- the last year Rock Lodge is run by Herman Soshinski as the American Gymnosophical Association. A WWII Draft registration card from 1942 for Herman Soshinski indicates his residence as Rock Lodge.

1943-44
- Dr. Francis dePaolo operates Rock Lodge as a nudist camp and the dePaolo family moves into the Stone House. A map dated 1943 is drawn indicating the Rock Lodge club property lease lines.

1945
- Henry Uhl operates the Rock Lodge Nudist Club for one year.
Note: As per Ron dePaolo and Francis dePaolo obituary: shortly thereafter Francis dePaolo moves into their converted farmhouse across the street on Rock Lodge Road, which had been their "summer" home. It was later destroyed by fire in 1953. After the fire, the dePaolo family then moved into their large garage located on the same property which they then converted into a residence where Francis dePaolo remained until his death in 1971.

1946
- Rock Lodge Club incorporates and signs a 10 year lease to the property with Francis dePaolo. Francis dePaolo sells 9.81 acres (3 tracts of land) to Fritz Holmstrand. A 1943 map indicates the property leased by Rock Lodge Club.

1955
- Rock Lodge Club signs a 40 year lease with Francis dePaolo.

1958
- Dr. Francis dePaolo signs a 20 year lease with the U.S. Government - for right of way regarding the Vortac Omni Tower for aircraft use.

1988
- Rock Properties forms and incorporates for the purpose of acquiring property from the Francis E. dePaolo estate that is leased by Rock Lodge club. As of the year 2000, the current owned property is comprised of 145 acres.



The historic Stone House today provides seasonal residences for several members. The living room, portico, and lawn are frequent venues for social and cultural activities as well as private parties.

Read more about the Stone House and A.L.A. Himmelwright in Wikipedia.