The Way We Were:
Excerpts from the 1959 CFA Yearbook, Part 6

Ristokat Himalayans & Persians

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Cats of Yesteryear: Masked Silver

Masked Silvers were introduced in America in 1901. Their tenure as a recognized class was brief, coming to an end in 1910. Only nineteen were registered in the combined Stud Books of the Beresford Cat Club, the American Cat Association, and the Cat Fanciers Association during this time. There were seven in the first three volumes of the CFA Stud Book and eight in the registers.

The standard for the Masked Silver called for “a pale silver cat having dark face and legs. The lighter the body and darker the face and legs, the nearer approach to type.”

Point scale of the Masked Silver:

Head and expression
  Coat and condition
Dark mask and legs
  Brush or tail
Color of eyes

Mrs. D. B. Champion, who introduced one of the two Masked Silvers to America, writes that “the ideal specimen was a very beautiful animal in coloring and marking. It resembled the Siamese in that it had a black mask or face, black feet and legs. The body coat was as pale silver as possible, with neither a dark spine nor tabby markings, and the yes of a deep golden orange, like the Smoke.”

Shaded Silvers, Chinchillas, Smokes and Blues wee crossed to produce Masked Silvers. Mrs. Champion states that Blacks bred from Silvers or Smokes also made a good cross, but not those from Reds or Tortoiseshells as they would be apt to spoil the purity of the ground color.

The first two Masked Silvers in America, Champion King of the Silvers (CFA Studbook Number 85) and Champion Lord Sylvester (CFA Studbook Number 96) were imported from England. Those two were the sires of most of the Masked Silvers registered in this country.

King of the Silvers was born August 19, 1898. His sire was Biterne Silver Chieftain, a Shaded Silver. He was owned by Miss A.L. Pollard of Elizabeth, New Jersey.

Lord Sylvester, born July 5, 1899, was brought to America by Mrs. Champion. His sire was Lord Argent, the famous Chinchilla. Lord Sylvester was the most perfect in coloring of any Masked Silver ever bred, and was the biggest winner in his class, but he never captured a Best in Show.

Masked Silvers were dropped by both the Cat Fanciers Association and the American Cat Association in 1910. It is, perhaps, unfortunate, as they were beautiful as well as distinctive.

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