The history of Hashomer Hatzair in North America began in 1923 with the arrival of Jewish immigrants from Europe who were members of the youth movement in their countries of origin. They established chapters (known as 'Kenim') in major cities around the US and Canada.
The first summer camps were set up in 1928 and a training farm was founded in New Jersey for the purpose of preparing groups of young adults for communal farming and life on kibbutzim in Israel.
Throughout the years Hashomer Hatzair has played key roles in Jewish history. In 1936, members of Hashomer were among the vanguard of the Haganah, the Jewish self-defense organization of Eretz Yisrael. In 1943, Mordechai Anilewicz, head of the Warsaw branch (Ken) of Hashomer, led the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising against the Nazis. After W.W.II, with the influx of Holocaust survivors and the need to settle and secure Eretz Yisrael, Hashomer Hatzair members founded some 30 kibbutzim in the years surrounding the creation of the Jewish State. Our history inspires our current generation to continue fighting for the ideals of Zionism, Social Justice, and Peace.
Since the founding of the movement, thousands of youths have attended Hashomer Hatzair camps and year-round activities where they established lifelong friendships with their peers. There is no exact figure of how many Shomrim there are in North America and around the world, but there are approximately 500 Shomrim in North America, and over 15,000 in the world.