Man learns of link to Underground Railroad

Although Darnall has uncovered the history of numerous Davenport residents and led the way on restorations at the city’s oldest cemetery, he knew nothing of this relative — a great-great-great-great-great-grandfather on his mother’s side — until about two years ago.

That’s when a Madison County woman who was seeking a grant to help restore the pioneer cemetery named after Farris researched his genealogy, down to living descendants.

And needing as much financial help as she could muster, she asked Darnall if he and his relatives could pay for the replication of Farris’ headstone. They did, and that’s how the dedication came about.

According to documentation in the Madison County Historical Museum Library, James Farris came to Iowa from Missouri with his family in 1851 when he was in his mid-50s. He was a farmer, hunter, trapper and abolitionist.

From the 1850s to 1862, he and his wife. Elizabeth. aided Freedom Seekers fleeing from Missouri, which was a slave state. Freedom Seekers were on secret paths to Des Moines, Chicago or Canada, and the Farris family provided guidance, safety, food and housing in their double log cabin.

Farris’ role in the Underground Railroad is “pertinent to what’s going on today,” Darnall said. “People are risking their lives” for justice.

Since learning of his relative, Darnall has researched fugitive slave laws, learning that a person caught and convicted of aiding and abetting a slave faced stiff penalties, including confiscation of their property and imprisonment.

Decadent modern cakes meet crazy cute cookies and more at new bakery


And then the stars aligned.

“I received an email from the previous bakery’s owner on a Tuesday morning asking if I’d be interested in purchasing a bakery, and Addie was the first person I thought of (to do it with),” Mabis said.

Around 9 a.m. that day, she texted Corby-Winn, “‘Hey, do you want to go see about a bakery?’” By 3 p.m., “we had seen it and decided we wanted to pursue it.”

Within two weeks, the two had made an offer, had a purchase agreement, and began moving in last month.

“And the rest is baking history,” Mabis said.

The two plan to stock a variety of offerings each Saturday, from several flavors of cookies, scones and pie slices to Rice Krispies treats, cake slices and brownies, with a handful of gluten-free and keto-friendly options, too.

With their own custom baking businesses now under one roof, Corby-Winn is happy with the variety of things the two will be able to offer their customers, such as cake and cookie packages, birthday- and wedding-related items and more.

“We care so much about our products (and) making sure that it is done in a way that we would want it,” Corby-Winn said.

At Saturday’s grand opening, a host of area vendors also will be on hand, offering everything from boutique items to popcorn. A limited number of people will be allowed into the bakery at once to comply with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, and masks/facial coverings are required.

Derecho 'brutalizes' famous oak tree

“A lot of really good things have happened as a result of my friendship with that tree,” Hirsch said.

Teen faces charges after crashing into restaurant

A Davenport teen faces numerous charges after he led Bettendorf police on a chase then crashed into a Davenport restaurant about 4 a.m. Monday.

Kpehe Kortu Selli, 17 – he will turn 18 Sept. 4 – faces charges of first-degree burglary, first-degree theft, felon in possession of a firearm, second-degree theft, second-degree criminal mischief, eluding, third-degree attempted burglary,and third-degree burglary and failure to maintain control.

Here’s what happened, according to official documents:

Selli was driving a stolen Honda Odyssey van when Bettendorf police tried to stop him. He fled at speeds exceeding 85 mph in a 35 mph zone.

He lost control of the van, struck the building at Bad Boyz Pizza, 5266 Utica Ridge Road, Davenport, then ran from the vehicle. He was taken into custody immediately afterward.

Inside the vehicle were three guns, one of which was stolen from Davenport.

Selli, a convicted felon, was the only person in the car.

Man admitted to shooting father at son's funeral







Jermier Leon Shorter

A first-degree murder suspect in the slaying of a father attending his son’s visitation appeared Sunday morning in Scott County Court.

Nuemonei Tre Vonne Laster, 24, of 713 W. 16th St., Davenport, is being held in Scott County Jail on charges on felony charges of first-degree murder, eluding, felon in possession of a firearm and interference with a weapon. His cash-only bond is $300,000.

Jeramie Shorter, 26, of Davenport, was shot about 11:30 a.m. Saturday outside Weerts Funeral Home, and later died.

Shorter was the father of Jermier Leon Shorter, 8, of St. Paul, Minn., who died from cancer. Jermier was born in Davenport.

Visitation was set for 9 a.m. until noon at the funeral home. Services were scheduled at the Pentecostal Church of God, Davenport, with a live stream on the Weerts Facebook page.

Kylea Crawford and Jeramie Shorter were Jermier’s parents, according to his obituary.

Court documents say Davenport police responded to the shooting at the funeral home, 3625 Jersey Ridge Road, where Laster “willfully, deliberately and with premeditation” shot Shorter in a parking lot/garage area.