The Way We Were:
Excerpts from the 1960 CFA Yearbook, Part 7

Ristokat Himalayans & Persians

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History of the Siamese, Part 3
by Carlon Boren

Although a relatively newcomer in America, the popularity of the Siamese cat grew so rapidly that an increasing number of catteries began to raise Siamese cats. In some cases the Siamese were bred exclusively and in others they took their place along with the Persians. We have already mentioned the invaluable contributions made by the Djer-Kits, Ming Kwong, Newton, Siam, Siamese Star and Storisend catteries. Other leading Siamese catteries of the mid-twenties and early thirties are worthy of note.

AZURE-YZE CATTERY (Miss Muriel M. Glenz, Freeport, L.I., N.Y.), founded in 1931, had numerous outstanding specimens of both Seal Point and Blue Point Siamese. Among the many winners at Azure-Yze, one of the most outstanding was Ch. Katchina of Newton. Her sire was Mrs. Cobb's Dbl. Ch. Sy Mingo ex Ch. Shela; others included Princess Evon and Imp. Rosedere Shan-Son. Miss Glenz was one of the most active promoters of the Siamese cat in America. She was elected president of the Siamese Cat Society of America in 1936.

COEUR-DE-LION CATTERY (Miss Jane Roberts, Hobart, Indiana) long known for its fine Persians, added Siamese in 1935, acquiring the outstanding cat, Newton's Yana-Yan, a fine daughter of Ch. Sy Mingo ex Ch. Ki-Kee-Ko.

EL-JAY-GEE CATTERY (Mrs. Laura J. Graham, Tarpon Springs, Florida), established in 1926 with smoke and black Persians, added Siamese in the spring of 1935. She obtained and showed Siamese cats from the Newton (Mrs. Cobb) blood lines. One of Mrs. Graham's most prominent sires was El-Jay-Gee's Kee-Kee-Sing from the Sarasota Siamese Cattery (Mrs. Lillian McWilliams).

HILLWOOD CATTERY (Mrs. Ellwood Wilson, Knowlton, Quebec, Canada) was founded for the purpose of introducing the Siamese cat into Canada where there were so few of this breed of cat. Outstanding at Hillwood was Ming King of Hillwood and Queen Poona Purachatar of the famous Bonzo II and Lanfine Mono-Lo strains.

KHYBER CATTERY (Miss Delle D. Smith, Bristol, Tenn.), established in 1929, was originally started with blue and black Persians. Siamese were added to the cattery and included many of the Newton blood lines. Among the best known at Khyber was Chiang Kai Chek, descendent of Ch. Bonzo I, of England, and Siam's T'Sing Loa of Khyber, a Blue Point stud. One of the best known queens at Khyber was Chowfa Maha. Miss Smith was a very active promoter of both the Seal Point and Blue Point Siamese and was so successful as a scientific breeder of high class stock that the Khyber cats received national as well as local recognition.

MAU TEIN CATTERY (Dr. Joseph C. Thompson, San Francisco, Calif.), was established about 1926. The parent stock for this cattery came from their native land and Dr. Thompson made every effort to keep the original characteristics of the native breed. Dr. Thompson's Siamese were very large in size, due in large part to an outdoor mode of life and a diet of lean meat, liver, fish and grass. The imported sire, Tia Mau, weighed seven and one-half pounds while his son, Pak Kwai Mau, tipped the scales at ten and one-half pounds. But the real "jumbo" Siamese of the cattery was Kwai Tse Mau, son of Pak Kwai Mau and Tai Noo Mau, which weighed 15 pounds. In addition to promoting the Siamese, Dr. Thompson was instrumental in creating much interest in the Burmese cat in America. He introduced the Burmese cat to the West by the importation of a female, Wong Mau, from Burma in 1930. Dr. Thompson's established place in the history of the fancy is attributed to his untiring efforts over the years to obtain recognition of the Burmese, with the result that the Burmese cat was accepted and permitted to compete in the championship classes. Dr. Thompson was a former director of the Siamese Cat Society of America.

MING SONG YEN CATTERY (Mrs. Sonia Fitz-Gerald, Miami, Florida), established in 1935, specialized in Seal Point Siamese exclusively. Mrs. Fitz-Gerald obtained first-class stock from the outstanding Seal Points in the country. Some of the cats at Ming Song Yen were Songareitta, Se-Yen, Ming-Chu-po, Patti Sing, Ch. King Sistowahr and Dbl. Ch. Loti Sito.

PURACHATAR CATTERY (Miss Louise Frith, Mt. Desert, Maine), established in 1934, contributed greatly to the promotion and establishment of the Blue Point Siamese in America. Miss Frith's first stud cat was a Seal Point, King Purachatar. The first queen was a Blue Point, Lanfine Wangsy, whose mother was also a famous Blue Point, Ch. Lanfine Mono Lo. We have made previous reference to the blue point genetics back of Lanfine Mono Lo. Miss Frith owned many famous cats at Purachatar. She purchased Queen Poona Purachatar from Mrs. Ellwood Wilson (Hillwood Cattery), also of the famous Bonzo II and Lanfine Mono Lo blood lines. Poona proved to be an outstanding Seal Point who threw Blue Point kittens. In 1936 Miss Frith purchased Dbl. Ch. Siam's Chief Noda of Purachatr (Mrs. Karl B. Norton), the first Blue Point Siamese to complete a championship in CFA and CFF. He was obtained from Mrs. J. Bock, of Newark, NJ, when she sold her Siamese and returned to Germany. In 1936 Miss Frith purchased Siam's Sancho from Mrs. Karl B. Norton. He was a Blue Point grandson of Dbl. Ch. Siam's Chief Noda of Purachatr.

On October 23, 1947, the entire Purachatr Cattery was wiped out by a forest fire at Bar Harbor, Maine. Miss Frith, who had been ill with a heart condition since early sp ring, was in a hospital at Mt. Desert Island. News of the progress of the fire was kept from her. On November 3rd Miss Frith died of her ailment upon learning of the catastrophe. According to a letter received by Cats Magazine after her death, Miss Frith wrote: "Among the cats destroyed were King Purachatr IV, a very fine Blue Point stud, slated to be sent to Mr. And Mrs. Charles A. Knight of Oswego, Oregon, and Song Kran of Purachatr. All were Blue Point Siamese." Other fine specimens who perished in the holocaust included: Songkla Purachatr of Mei Lei, Koen Yung of Purachatr, Kwon Ying Phan of Purachatr and Goforth's Princess Khiem Mei.

Fortunately, for those interested in the Purachatr blood lines, some cats and kittens had been sent to breeders in the early spring. Mrs. Blanche Warren, of Bellflower, California, had a Blue Point male; Mrs. R.C. O'Donovan, of South Miami, Florida, a very fine Blue Point female; Mrs. Stanley Gibson, of Chicago, a Blue Point female, Ch. Princess Purachatr; a pair of Blue Point kittens to Mrs. Gordon Palmer, of Chicago; and many others, including a lovely kitten received by the eminent English actor, Mr. James Mason.

ROSEBANK CATTERY (Mrs. Lucille Ashcraft Purnell, Salisbury, Md.), established in 1926, was one of the largest catteries in America at the time. Besides fine Siamese, Rosebank was outstanding for its solid color, silver and tortoiseshell Persians. One of the most prominent Siamese studs at Rosebank was Sayama of Valhalla, obtained from Mrs. C.C. Strange.

ROYAL CATTERY (Miss Leslie M. Volk, Honolulu, T.H.) established in 1935, was founded to promote the Siamese cat in Hawaii despite severe quarantine restrictions. Even today all cats imported to the "Islands" must go through four months quarantine at 50 cents per day. Even kittens must remain 120 days. Because of these precautions there has not been a single case of rabies in Hawaii for the past thirty years. Royal Cattery included Imp. Ch. Bernadett and Nan Ky Moon in its blood lines. The celebrities of Miss Volk's Royal family included Prince Prajadhipok, Princess Li Ta of Ching Ming Tai, and Princess Che La.

SAMITE SIAMESE KAT KENNEL (C. Evans Sawyer, Jr., South Portland, Maine), was established in 1933 with the objective of developing a strain of Siamese that combined the qualities of the several prominent blood lines. The blood lines represented included: Ch. Simple, Ch. Bonzo, Ch. Sing-Po of Ming Kwong, Ch. Djer-Kits' Chinkaling of Newton and Ch. Lanfine Isma. The two most outstanding Siamese at "Samite" were Wendi-Cha of Yates-de-Aairy and Goodrich's Sir Thomas.

SARASOTA SIAMESE CATTERY (Mrs. Lillian McWilliams, Sarasota, Florida), was established in 1933. Consistent top show winners for Sarasota included: Peti-Sing of Yates-de-Airy, Ch. Rama-Sing, El-Jay-Gee's Kee-Kee-Sing and Ch. Chief Chi-Chi.

VALHALLA CATTERY (Mrs. C.C. Strange, El Paso, Texas), was established in 1926, was one of the best known catteries devoted to Siamese. Mrs. Strange was one of the few breeders of that era to raise the Blue Point as well as the Seal Point Siamese. The most outstanding of the Valhalla cats was the famous undefeated Seal Point Ch. Mahatma M.K. Ghandi; there was also an outstanding Blue Point, Valhalla's Kwang-Tung, a son of famous Dbl. Ch. Siam's Chief Noda (Mrs. Karl B. Norton); the best known female was Ming-Po of Valhalla. Valhalla blood lines also included such famous winners as Tifils de Bonneville and Mlle. Lilli de Roscoff, both imported. Mrs. Strange was very active in promoting the Siamese cat in America and her stock was always in great demand.

WATERMEAD CATTERY (Mrs. George de Gersdorff, Bedford Hills, NY), was founded on blood lines of Siamese stock which were imported from Siam to America direct. One of these was the Seal Point male Prince Damras of Watermead. Another was Mrs. De Gersdorff's Seal Point queen Chez Minet Tika, who was a descendant of the pair taken from the Royal Temple by King Chulalong, many years previous, and presented to Madame Blanche Arrall, the opera singer, at the time she visited Siam and sang before royalty. These were two of the very few so-called "Temple Cats" to leave Siam and the only ones to come to America direct - Wicky Wicky I and Moumonte I.

WYANDOTTE CATTERY (Mrs. F. L. Mock, Columbus, Ohio), established in 1924, specialized in Siamese and red tabby Persians. The blood lines represented at Wyandotte included such prominent cats as Mrs. Bearden's Ch. Bonzo II, which was the sire of Dbl. Ch. Ming Kwong Chang of Wyandotte and his grandsire was none other than the Gr. Ch. Bonzo of England. Dbl. Ch. Ming Kwong Chang of Wyandotte won the CFA award for 1934-1935 for the cat taking best in the short hair division the greatest number of times in one season. One of the most outstanding Siamese queens at this cattery was Ch. Djer-Kits of Petling of Wyandotte (Mrs. Metcalf, breeder) and proved to be a most consistent winner in the shows for Wyandotte.

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