It has been 20 years since voters in Rock Island County have not found an incumbent on the ballot for recorder of deeds. That is how long Democrat Pat Veronda served in the elected position before announcing her retirement last year. On Nov. 6 voters will choose between Republican Tony Holland, of Silvis, and Democrat Kelly Fisher, of Rock Island. Mr. Holland is chief legislative aide for state Rep. Rich Morthland. Ms. Fisher has served 20 years in the recorder's office -- the last 18 as chief deputy. The main focus of the office is providing information on the history of property in the county. We could debate why the recorder needs to be elected, but we save that for another time. Property owners, banks and Realtors expect quick and accurate service when they deal with the office, and, for the most part, we believe they have received that. Both candidates come from service-oriented backgrounds and say they will continue that commitment in the recorder's office. Both want to get more of the county's historical documents accessible online -- a laudable goal, but one which requires time and money. If voters are happy with how the office has been run and want to continue with a veteran hand on the tiller, electing Ms. Fisher should provide a smooth transition. But if they see this as a once-in-two-decades opportunity to bring in someone with a new perspective who might see new ways to enhance service, Mr. Holland offers that option. Both have earned our support and should be commended for running professional, issue-oriented campaigns.
Today is Sunday, May 19, the 139th day of 2013. There are 226 days left in the year. 1863 -- 150 years ago: The Rt. Rev. Harry I. Witherspoon, D.D. Bishop of Illinois, willpreach in Trinity (Episcopal) Church, in this city this evening. 1888 -- 125 years ago: At 1 o'clock yesterday afternoon the Mississippi River flooded itsbanks at Rock Island, destroying the warehouse of the Rock Island Lumber companyand damaging the Lumber Company and arsenal power plant. Total loss isestimated at $100.000. 1913 -- 100 years ago: Residents of South Rock Island township are circulating a petitionfavoring the annexation of that area to the city of Rock Island. 1938 -- 75 years ago: Mrs. Thomas Ackles, of Rock Island, has been elected president ofthe Playcrafters for the next season. She succeeds Warren Leonard. 1963 -- 50 years ago: Some 8,000 people filed through the gates of Rock Island Arsenal on Saturday to view a display of a part of the nation's armed strength. The occasion was theannual observance of Armed Forces Day. 1988 -- 25 years ago: Willis Kuschmann, of Moline, who already has won his laurels as oneof the most artistic men in the Quad-Cities area, has a new hobby. He is deeply involvedin miniature railroading. At the age of 88, when many other seniors are dozing in theirchairs or sitting before the television, Mr. Kuschmann is planning and working on hiscollection.