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PREOSSIA's History

PREOSSIA was established in January 1999, when two fanciers of the Old-Style Siamese decided that a club was needed for people interested in preserving the original native pointed cat of Thailand. They were not interested in the highly stylized and sculpted, dainty feline that most of the Siamese breed had become after a century of selective breeding. But neither were they interested in the opposite extreme, the American myth of a stocky, heavy-boned, roundheaded, fluffy "Siamese." They were interested in learning what the pointed cats native to Thailand were like in the present as well as in the past, objectively documenting the native cats, and finding a way to preserve them.

Before the end of 1999, the two had grown to a dozen. Fanciers of the old type of Siamese who had been associated with other clubs found in PREOSSIA a forum for open, objective discussion and a willingness to work with the mainstream cat fancy that they felt had been missing previously.

It was the dozen founding members of PREOSSIA who christened the club. In 1999, a PREOSSIA member, Beverly McGuire, was the first to suggest the name "Old-Style Siamese" as the official name of the breed as defined, promoted, and preserved by PREOSSIA. Old-Style Siamese had not previously been used in uppercase, as the formal name for any breed.

In 2000, PREOSSIA members, who at first were all Americans, discovered they had much in common philosophically with fanciers of the old Siamese in other countries.

It was partly to show solidarity with PREOSSIA members that a British club for fanciers of the old type of Siamese adopted the name Old-style Siamese Club (OSSC). See

Breeders from countries all over Europe began joining PREOSSIA.

The internationalization of PREOSSIA proved to be hugely beneficial for all concerned. The club's members learned a lot from each other about the status of the Old-Style Siamese all over the world. They learned to work with each other and were also able to exchange breeding cats with each other. This was enormously beneficial to the gene pool of a breed that at one point was nearly extinct in the West. With the imports from Thailand added to the mix, the breed began to have a bright future.

The ties forged between PREOSSIA's members on two continents were instrumental in persuading The International Cat Association (TICA) in 2006 to accept the Old-Style Siamese as a breed independent of the show-style Siamese. TICA chose the name Thai for the Old-Style Siamese as shown at TICA shows. This was appropriate because the hundreds of independent European registries had been calling the breed "Thai" for sixteen years (since 1990). It was also considered appropriate because the Old-Style Siamese is the native pointed cat of Thailand. It is the Thai Siamese, or Thai for short.

PREOSSIANs will continue to work for the preservation and promotion of this ancient breed.

For questions about PREOSSIA, email the Webmaster.

(c) Text and photos copyright 1999-2017 A.D. by PREOSSIA. Some photos and materials on or linked to this site are copyrighted by individual PREOSSIA members and their friends and are found here with their permission. You may link to this page, but may not copy or reproduce any portion of it or anything linked to it without written consent from the copyright holders.