The Himalayan breed was started in 1930 by Dr. Clyde Keller, from The Harvard Medical School, and Virginia Cobb of Newton Cattery. They started out by breeding Siamese cats with Persian cats, trying to develop a long-haired, Persian-bodied cat with the color-points of the Siamese. They bred and crossbred until "Newton's Debutante" was born. This cat was the first cat recognized as beginning the Himalayan Breed.
The breed was accepted by CFA in 1957 as a breed standard, and in the 1980's it was merged with the Persian breed, listing them as a color variation of a Persian instead of a totally different breed. Now in order to breed CFA registered Himalayans, you must have a CFA Registered Persian and/or Himalayan for both the sire and the dam. No Siamese are allowed in the breeding line.