Mr. Hensel copyright

The Slumbering Lodge

The Slumbering Lodge of Hibernating Governors was founded in 1908 by George Washington Hensel Jr. of Quarryville, PA. Mr. Hensel died in 1943 but his Lodge lives on, with about 250 reported members.

The headquarters of the Slumbering Lodge is also known as the Chateau at White Rock or the Slumbering Groundhog Lodge. It is located near Quarryville PA on the banks of the mighty West Branch of the Octoraro Creek. It's an idyllic place: well-situated next to the lovely White Rock Forge covered bridge, and surrounded by wooded hills and cow pastures.

The current head of the Hibernating Governors is Richard M. Rankin. He was elected in 2009 after Dr. James Pennington held the post for 28 years.

Each year the Lodge inducts a handful of new members - "baby groundhogs" - who have proven their mettle by surviving a grueling training regimen. This is designed to ensure that they are fully qualified for the rigors of membership. And each year, one lucky "baby" is selected for the high honor of being dunked in the icy Octoraro Creek.

Lodge members are entitled to all ranks and privileges pertaining thereunto, including the right to wear the official uniform of the Hibernating Governors: a white nightshirt (signifying the winter slumber of the groundhog) and a black top hat.

Each lodge member belongs to a squad, and each squad has its own unique traditions, responsibilities, and symbols:

- Baldy Squad

- Card Sharks

- Dill Pickle Squad

- Dunked Squad

- Puddle Duck Squad

- Shale Belt Squad

- SNOOP Squad

- Tally Ho Squad