The sleek Balinese, with their sapphire-blue eyes and graceful fine bones, were known since the early 1920s as purebred long-haired Siamese. At birth, they are white or pure cream in color and tend to darken with age. Sometime in the 1950s, Marion Dorsey of California and Helen Smith of New York, decided they would start a breeding program for the longhaired cats. Smith named the cats Balinese because the cats displayed the beauty and grace of Balinese dancers. The breed became popular and soon two separate strands were created. Balinese are intelligent cats and seem to have fewer problems with allergies than other breeds.