Connecticut Cat Club - Cambell Fraser Challenge Trophy (1931)
Although it is unclear as to when the Connecticut Cat Club was formed, it is likely to have been within the first three years of the new 20th century. Evidence of this early start is provided by an article that appeared in 'The Strand Magazine' in England in 1904, which featured a piece written by Parker Johnson, regarding the Cat Club's Masquerade Ball, the theme of which was of course, Cats!
The Connecticut Cat Club was at that time centred in the city of Stamford, and the organiser of the Ball was Mrs. Helen W. Cummings, President of the Connecticut Cat Club. Mrs. Cummings is shown below, alongside an image of two figures from the Masked Ball, followed by two other images from the same event.
The Connecticut Cat Club was primarily comprised of a group of breeders and cat fanciers, and the Connecticut Cat Club, along with other feline societies, initially participated in the State Fair, held at Danbury, where there was an Annual exhibition of cats and prizes were awarded. It was not until the late 1920's when, as a member of The Cat Fanciers Association, the club began holding its own licenced Shows.
Mrs. Campbell Fraser, the well-known English breeder and Judge of Hendon Cattery fame, was invited to judge the third Championship Show of the Connecticut Cat Club, to be held at the Hotel Taft, New Haven on January 23rd and 24th, 1931. Mrs. Campbell Fraser was a regular contributor to the widely circulated 'Fur and Feather' magazine, and the Hon. Secretary of the Southern Counties Cat Club. She took with her, and donated to the Club, the trophy which is the subject of this artefact review, 'The Campbell Fraser Challenge Cup' dated 1931, which in all probability was first awarded at this specific show.
Fortunately, the CFA Foundation has within its archives, a catalogue from this show, the cover of which is featured above, showing that the officiating judge was Mrs. Campbell Fraser, from London, England. A wonderful and lasting friendship developed between Mrs. Campbell Fraser and the Club, which duly presented Mrs. Campbell Fraser with an Honorary Life Membership.
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