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A love story in Barton: Lending a hand at the History Center of Washington County

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Dec. 19, 2016 – Barton, WI – Hank and Essie and Al Moll scurried about the mock 1950’s display at the History Center of Washington County.

The couple felt right at home in the pink kitchen designed to showcase artifacts from the West Bend Co. and Regal Ware, Inc.

“It’s so odd how they refer to these items as artifacts and grandma has them all over the house,” said Essie as she wiped down the copper colored canisters of flour and sugar.

Hank had finished pushing the Admiral refrigerator into the small alcove under the cabinet. He took a shiny green aluminum cup and pretended to fill it from the tap. He pushed his cap back and threw back the water with loud “glug glug” noises. “Ahhh… good stuff,” he said.

Essie had her hands on her hips and stared deadpan across the room.

“Want some,” asked Hank.  “Ice cold.”

Essie smiled and shook her head. “You and your shenanigans. We gotta finish this up soon – there’s a big crowd coming tonight.”

Walking across the checker-board floor Essie busied herself in the kitchen. Her mind drifted as she recalled grandpa pushing the Penguin server across the counter to the icebox where he’d prepare it to hold the fixins’ for Gin & Tonics. Essie loved looking at her reflection in the side of the container, like she was in the house of mirrors at the county fair.

Essie was brought back to reality by Hank, who was having a coughing fit. A series of toothpicks sat in a row on the counter by a display of cocktail wieners, olives, and water chestnut and chicken liver wrapped in bacon. “What are you doing,” admonished Essie as she raced over to give him a couple hard cracks on the back.

Hank’s face was red.

“I’d give you a drink of water but you drank it already,” said Essie in a bit of a wide-eyed panic.

“You goof. Don’t eat those… they’re for display!”

With that she took the tray and wheeled around on her heel to move them out of Hank’s reach.

The exhibit, Delayed Desires: America’s Post-War consumer boom is open at the History Center of Washington County. The display showcases artifacts, photographs, and advertising from our West Bend Co. and Regal Ware, Inc.collection along with other artifacts from the 1950s-1970s.

Steeple repair complete at St. Mary’s in Barton


On Tuesday, Dec. 13 contractors with Krause Konstruction finished replacing the shingles on the steeple at St. Mary’s Parish.

The 100-year-old slate shingles were replaced. Because of a late shipment the replacement job was delayed and that meant crews had to finish the job while working in below zero temperatures.

Contractors took breaks about once an hour to warm their faces, fingers and toes.

Funding for the project is part of the parish’s 160 Landmark campaign.




A bit of history on the St. Mary’s clock

The four faces of St. Mary’s Sebastian Hirschboeck clock have been keeping a watchful eye over the village of Barton for 159 years.


According to Hirschboeck descendant Ione J. Schuster on January 9, 1974, “The Sebastian Hirschboeck clock in Barton, WI is in the church tower of the Immaculate Conception Church.


“This information is from Mr. Alfred Schroeder, a jeweler who has repaired it on occasion. Also, his interest stems back a long time as his father helped move the clock to the new church in 1900. It first was in the original St. Mary’s Church located in Barton, built in 1857.”


“The clock has four faces and hours and quarter hours are struck on the church bell. It is run by weights about 100 pounds each. The weights are hung on steel cables, which are wound around a drum. It is wound by hand, with a crank.

The pendulum swings behind the organ loft and weighs approximately 100 lbs. as well. It is located in the last part of the church steeple. There are no windows there. It is reached through a trap door via ladder. It must be wound every day, keeps perfect time, but stops in the winter months when ice gets into the mechanism.” – Information shared from Hirschboeck Family Genealogy Site.

Sebastian Hirschboeck and his wife Elizabeth arrived in Barton in 1855, and were founding members of St. Mary’s. They opened a boot, shoe and clock repair shop on Commerce (Water) Street and lived in the large home next door. Both buildings are still there today.


The clock originally had a black face with white hands and white Roman numerals. Facts courtesy Mark Knoeck, Steve Kissinger and Terry Becker.



Joker’s 5 Bar & Grill sends toy donations to Children’s Hospital

Diane and Kay Holbrook will be taking a shipment of stuffed toys to Children’s Hospital in Milwaukee today. It’s part of the 3rd annual Teddy Bear Drive at Joker’s 5 Bar & Grill .  The Holbrooks collected over 200 stuffed animals which will be donated to the CICU the week of Christmas to brighten the day for kids during the holiday season. Kay has been collecting and donating the stuffed animals as a tribute to her 2-year-old son Mason, who has spent a great deal of time at Children’s Hospital. “We see the families and know what it’s like to be away from home, especially for the holidays,” she said. “Even a small gift like this can make a difference.”


Bob’s Main Street Auto promotes safe winter driving
With the winter driving season upon us Bob’s Main Street Auto, 1200 Main Street, is offering tips on how to keep your vehicle running efficiently. The are several preventative maintenance tips available by clicking HERE.
Build. Boost & Buy in Barton  – – Shop these local businesses

          Wisconsin House Woodworks

          Albiero Plumbing 

          Master Electric
           Lake Lenwood Beach and Campground

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