Old Brass Ball returned to Paddock Lake by Huntoon family

The donated brass ball. The origin of the dents is not known for sure. Some feel they might be from bullets fired at teh ball when it was performing its first duty as a mine buoy. Other think they were made when local folks took a few shots at the landmark as a lark.

The donated brass ball. The origin of the dents is not known for sure. Some feel they might be from bullets fired at the ball when it was performing its first duty as a mine buoy. Others think they were made when local folks took a few shots at the landmark as a lark.

A brass ball that long hung over the highway intersection at Brass Ball Corners in Paddock Lake has been returned to the village for display.

The ball was formally donated to the village Friday by Jim Huntoon and his sister Annette Siehoff, descendants of Seth Huntoon, who first established an inn marked by a brass ball at the crossroads in the 1800s. The spot became known as Brass Ball Corners, a name it retains today.

The ball will eventually become part of the village’s local history display at Village Hall.

The brass ball donated Friday is believed to have hung over the intersection for over 50 years. It was a mine buoy that washed up on the Florida coast, said Jim Huntoon.

The ball was in private hands for awhile after being replaced by the current brass ball. It eventually came back to Huntoon’s family and he recently decided to give it to the village.

“We’re glad it’s going to be in a place where people will be able to see it,” said Huntoon, who lives near Madison.

Village officials were delighted with the donation.

“This is such a vital piece of history,” said village President Terry Burns. “It’s the piece we’ve been missing,” he added referring to the village collection of historical items. Most of the display is photos, but Burns has wanted to display more artifacts, like the brass ball.

“I think this is where it really belongs,” said Trustee Barb Brenner.

While he was here, Huntoon also offered the village some more photos and items related to his family’s history.

Posing with the old brass ball are (from left) Esther Huntoon, Trustee Barbara Brenner, village President Terry Burns, Jim Huntoon and Annette (Huntoon) Siehoff.

Posing with the old brass ball are (from left) Esther Huntoon, Trustee Barbara Brenner, village President Terry Burns, Jim Huntoon and Annette (Huntoon) Siehoff.

Jim Huntoon and Anette Siehoff look over some of the village's historical photos of the area. Village administrator Tim Popanda is in the background.

Jim Huntoon and Anette Siehoff look over some of the village’s historical photos of the area. Village administrator Tim Popanda is in the background.

Jim Huntoon and village President Terry Burns look over some of Huntoon's historical mementos.

Jim Huntoon and village President Terry Burns look over some of Huntoon’s historical mementos.

104 Shares

7 Comments

  1. Joni Illges says:

    I was just visiting Paddock Lake last week. I wished I had the time to visit the new Village Hall. So much has changed since I grew up there. I met the gentleman who bought the house I grew up in. I hope to visit him next year when I return.

  2. Jessica ware says:

    I think this is Awesome …. I have been a resident for 14 years ! I love it !!! Unfortunately, My family and I have moved recently , but our memories in Paddock Lake will forever be in our hearts !!!!

  3. Troy Humann says:

    I grew up there in Paddock Lake and even before I lived there I remember traveling from Chicago to visit my grandmother passing by the old brass ball this ball has a definite history there in Paddock Lake it is part of its history.

  4. Jan Weems says:

    I worked at the Brass Ball Restaurant for one summer while I was going to college. I was married, and needed a job with flexible hours, so waitressing was perfect. I loved that job — the people who owned or ran the place were so nice, unlike many restaurant owners. Irene and John — something. She was very motherly and always insisted we servers sit down and eat a decent meal before we left. We had little tea carts to serve the food and drinks from, and later, to clear the tables with…. made it a lot easier on our backs than carrying heavy trays. The building was ancient… the restaurant was on a higher level than the bar and kitchen, and you had to get a running start to go up the ramp with your cart! Nice memories. I don’t know what happened to the building, I moved to Il for a time, when I returned it was gone, and there was a Walgreens in its place…. can anyone tell me, did it burn down or what?

  5. Dave Schultz says:

    Walgreens purchased the property and had the restaurant demolished.

  6. Victor says:

    Re: Jan Weems and Dave Schultz: I remember the restaurant on the southwest corner of Brass Ball Corners. I believe the owners were distant relatives of my mother. I’d sure like to know more about the place and its owners, if possible. Does anybody have pictures of the place? Just memories (and possible genealogy)…

  7. F-E Weiss says:

    I was born in Illinois in 1947 but my grandparents ran their own business outside of Burlington, on Brown’s Lake, where they rented out cottages and had a custard stand, pony rides, and a mini golf. I spent every summer until I was maybe 13 with them in Wisconsin. And EVERY TIME we drove up there or back down again my grandfather would always point up and say, “Yep! There’s Brass Ball Corner!”

Leave a Reply

  • Follow us on

  • Archives