Afghan Hound Times
(Afghan Hound Database and Breed Information Exchange)
NAACP 'Crisis' Magazine
(Article/Letter re Reigh Berry Abram of Dureigh Afghan Hounds, April 1962)
This letter from Mrs. Reigh Berry ABRAM of Wellington, Ohio, tells of her experiences when she entered her Afghans in the Tara Afghan Hound Speciality show in Marietta, Georgia. Mrs Abram is Negro and this fact give piquancy to her experiences.
But what started out as a joke last year when I attended the show ast the Gardens, ended up by my taking our young champion to the Tara Afghan Hound Speciality show in Marietta, Georgia, on April 5th. We were warned several times not to do it, that couldn't be done, the Klu Klux Klan would not permit it; I and any of my friends who might attempt to defend me would never get ouf of Marietta alive. To me, it was a challenge that had to be met head-on.
PRIZE-WINNING AFGHAN HOUNDS--- These two Afghan Hounds below belong to Mr. and Mrs. Dewey Abram of Wellington, Ohio, owners of the Dureigh Kennels. At L is Dureigh's Golden Harvest, top stud dog 1958 and 1959. Duerigh's Dragon Lady was top bitch of the country for 59, 60 and 61
My husband who was raised in Georgia said he wouldn;t go, but since I am from Oberlin, Ohio, I did not believe I should not go. Anyway, I felt that I owed it to the cause of race-relations to give it a t ry. I wrote the Sueprintendent of the show and told him that I was entering my dog and expected the same consideration as any other exhibitor. He answerd that I need have no fear of anything while in show, as he would pesonallysee that it was that way.
But a committee of citizens went to the hotel room of the woman judging the show the followingd ay (Mrs Robert Tongren, Bloomfield, Conn.) and threatened her as to the repurcussions the following day if she dared give the top spot to our dog. She replied that they had better get another judge, then, as her feeling was that if our Ch. Dragon Lady ws entered and since she was the nearest thing to perfection that she had ever had the privelege of touching, she was almost certain to put her up
Well Dee as we call her, won the Specialty, hands down. Needless to say, that altho' I was scared to death all of the time I had the dog safey out of Georgia, it was the greatest thril of my life. The other exhibitors, the Superintendent of the show, the club and the AKC most certainly deserve agreat deal of credit for going thru with so tricky a situation without one word of dissatisfaction. I know it took a lot of doing, but on the surface everything was just as it should have been. I could sense the undercurrent but it was never once allowed toboil over. And that was right at the beginning of the "Freedom Riding" too.
But you see it can be done, if there is enough sincerity behind it. Some who would have liked to show their resentment, did not dae, as they knew that the rule of the AKC that any behavior detrimental to the interest of pure bred dogs at any show would result in expulsion from the Club, and they culd not show, breed or register any dogs until the suspension was lifted. So it might be well for the govement to take a lesson from the American Kennel Club..
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