Ben Callison, Director
Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch
PO Box 367
Murchison, TX 75778
Founded in 1979 by the late author, animal advocate, founder of the Fund for Animals, and former NEAVS President Cleveland Amory, the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch provides nearly 1,300 acres as home to more than 1,200 animals. The residents have been rescued from biomedical research laboratories, slaughterhouses, trophy hunting ranches, circuses, roadside zoos, the exotic pet trade, and from public lands where they were threatened with extermination by the federal government.The Black Beauty Ranch currently provides a permanent, safe home for three chimpanzees: Kitty, rescued from the Coulston Foundation; and Lulu and Midge, both rescued from LEMSIP. It was also home to their companion Nim Chimpsky who, like Washoe at CHCI, learned American Sign Language.
Nim was an extraordinary chimpanzee who was raised as a member of a human family until he was approximately two years old. He was part of a cross-fostering/language acquisition study in which he learned to communicate using American Sign Language. Language acquisition research in great apes is considered by many scientists to have been a dead end. Consequently, as grant money for sign language research dried up, Nim - like many of the language study-apes including Booee, Ally, Bruno, and others - was destined for a cage in a biomedical research lab. He was to be used in hepatitis research at NYU. Appalled when he learned about Nim’s unjust fate, Cleveland Amory offered Black Beauty Ranch as a more fitting lifetime home. Fortunately for Nim, he was rescued from a fate in intrusive biomedical research. He lived at Black Beauty Ranch for the rest of his life until his passing in 2000. He was 26 years old when he died.