A Look Back in History by Richard H. Shaner: Tigger, the stray cat at the Town Crier's House


On July 23, Loveable Tigger, the adopted stray cat at the Kutztown Town Crier’s House, passed away from old age.

A loyal pet that had moved in with my wife and I several years ago, he enjoyed our cat food hand outs, and used our wagon shed for shelter whenever we had rain storms. Tigger was neutered, and got along with our house cat, Jethroe, or any stray cat that by chance wondered down our Sanders back alley. But most of all, he was a loving cat who welcomed the two of us when we came home, having decided to live with us these many years.

Even watching Fox Television sitting with me, sprawled out on the love seat in our kitchen with another stay cat we affectionately called, “Sister.” But most of all, both cats did not like thunder and lightning.

Having moved into the main Town Crier’s house about five years ago, they were considered house pets, sharing our household routine. But the summer heat did cause us to turn on household fans to make their lives more comfortable. However, being stray cats, they never forgot the cool evenings of the summer months and did prefer the outdoors. We had an old abandoned dog house in which they could hide in, should we have a surprise rain shower.


But most of all, Tigger, Sister, and Tigger’s twin brother “Twinner,” liked sitting on the patio chairs and umbrella table, lounging in the shade of our side lawn, looking as though the 1804 Town Crier’s home was their very own property.

Even though my wife and I are very busy people, taking time out of our busy schedule was more than paid back with the love and companionship of Tigger and both his stray cat partners.

There is definitely a humanitarian friendship shared by these helpless creatures and human beings that is equal to Christian love, that may not be experienced elsewhere, in this somewhat cruel world! To all our visitors who enjoyed petting Tigger when they visited the Town Crier’s House, he is still here in loving spirit, buried in the side lawn beneath his favorite tree. Peace be with all of you!

Richard H. Shaner is director of the American Folklife Institute in Kutztown.