In 1960, the first Devon Rex, curly cat pixie-like, was born in a farm of Devonshire, England. Beryl Cox took in this rippled-haired kitten and named it Kirlee. Later on, Beryl Cox read an article in the Daily Mirror about the breeding of a waving-haired cat called Cornish Rex, from the name of Cornwall, the area where the first kitten, Kallibunker, has been found. Then she sold Kirlee to these breeders for £25. They mated him with the Cornish Rex, but no curly kittens came out: Kirlee was carrying a mutation different from the mutation of the Cornish Rex.
Kirlee, the 1st Devon Rex
(Source: The complete Cat Encyclopedia, Pond(ed), Ashford & Pond, Ann Gibney)
As a result, the breeders decided to separate the two lines and to create a new breed, the Devon Rex.
After a few generations, the Devon type settled down to be clearly identified. FIFe (Fédération Internationale Féline) officially recognized the Devon Rex as a breed in 1967. CFA (Cat Fanciers' Association) accepted the Rex breed without making any distinction between the Cornish Rex and the Devon Rex until 1979 then CFA gave two different registrations. In 1983, the CFA Devon breeders were allowed to compete in championships.