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Chess History

ALT OM SKAK FOR DEM PRAKTISKE SPILLER, B. Nielsen & A. Christensen, Odense, 1943.very fully illustrated with many fine B&W photos. A large 11.75 x 8.5 in. book, h, vg, corners bumped, Cordingley's copy with his handstamp. 523p on heavy paper. A special book with many fully annotated games, especially of Alekhine, Capablanca, Lasker, Nimzovich, and Scandinavian players. Some 121 photos of Scandinavian players are given plus an article on Nimzovich's  games with notes; The Problem Art and the Practical Game EG Studies  by Poul Hage; Nordic Games; and several fine photos of Alekhine and some wonderful photos of Capablanca and Lasker. A really wonderful book. $165  SOLD

BOKEN OM SCHACK, Edited by Eric Carlen, Upsala, 1948. In the same vein as Alt Om Skak above but in Swedish. 240p. p, vg, with essays including  (in Swedish) Modern Schackpsykologi,  I Kamp Med Vårldseliten by Stahlberg, with annotated examples from his games, & translated titles (text in Swedish), Middle Games Combinations by Lundin, Endgame Studies by Clausen, The Early Swedish Masters, The Swedish Chess Literature, and more. A fine book in a large format.  $110

FRANKLIN - MERCANTILE CHESS CLUB 1885-1985, centennial Celebration, John Bender, p, exc, 13p, with several photos from olden times and a very brief history. $15

ISTORIYA SHAKHMATNYKH SOSTYAZANIY, N. Grekov, Moscow, 1937, h, vg, 191p. Many x-tables. Excellent indexing & references. 2nd edition. Russian. $75 

MACKENZIE, MASON & CO. - CHESS IN NEW YORK BETWEEN 1866 AND 1880, J. Van Winsen, Part I: 1866-1867, Nottingham, 2012, p, mint, Ltd ed of 100 numbered copies162p. Many games 150 games, many with notes. $35.   Part II, 1868, 100 numbered copies, 137p, p, mint, excellent research in both parts. $30.  The two parts bought together, $60. PART III, 1869, 100 numbered copies,  181 p, over 160 games many with light notes. The author has done an outstanding research job in finding many games in this hitherto ill-documented period of American chess  which was then centered in Boston, New York and Philadelphia, especially after Morphy's withdrawal from chess. $30 for Part III. All three parts bought at one time, $85. Presumably several more volumes will follow to take the history up to 1880 eventually.   

LIVING CHESS IN CAMPIEGNE, FRANCE IN THE 1920'S, Black & White photos, 8x10. The pieces are represented by people and horses (knights) dressed elaborately. $28 the set of 4 photos

STAMMT SCHACH AUS ALTINDIEN ODER CHINA?  - Teil 1 Deutsch, Teil 2 EnglischPavle Bidet, Yu Igalo 1986,German part, 300p. English part, 88p.  Although the purely technical parts of this book (paper, typography, binding, etc) are third-rate, the arguments of Prof. Bidev must indeed be considered as a serious argument in opposition to the conventional theory of old India as the origin. A legitimate discussion obviously needs far greater space than can be presented here, along with substantiation and detailed evidence for the arguments on both sides. p, vg, $50.


DAS SCHACHPIEL IN DER ARABISCHEN LITERATUR VON DEN ANFÄNGEN BIS ZUR ZWEITEN HÄLTE DES 16. JAHRHUNDERTS, Reinhard Weber, Verlag für Orientkunde Dr. H. Vorndran, Wall-Hess, 1972. p, vg, 508p, with many illustrations and references. A highly scholarly work of interest to serious scholars and especially those who understand German.  $60

QUELLENSTUDIEN ZUR GESCHICHTE DES SCHACHSPIELS, A. V. D. Linde, a reprint of the 1881 edition. Biblio Verlag, Osnabrück, 1968. h, exc, 412p. One of the seminal works of chess history by one of the all-time leading chess scholars. $175  

CHESS IN RUSSIA, Romanovsky, The Players and their Games.London, 1946. Of special interest are the capsule biographies of the Russian masters and Grandmasters as well as their to female players. in English, with forewords by  Botvinnik and Alexander. p, good, worn covers. 18 choice games with full notes. $15.  b) h, vg, ex-library with release stamp. $14.

DR. N. NIEMEYER ENVELOPES,the late Dr. Niemeyer of Wassenaar, Holland, was one of the all-time greats as a collector of chess  of chess books and ephemera which he then donated to the Royal Dutch Library iN Waasenaar, Holland, to augment their magnificent chess collection. Autographed by him. $3.

EARLY CHESS IN AMERICA, A. C. Klahre, Middleton, NY, 1934. p, mint, scarce. 20p.With a lot on the missing Rou MS. $65  

SCHACH GESCHICHTE(N) - Legend und Wirklichkeit, Schubirz & Bringmann, Berlin, 1968, h, exc, with the chess bookplate of Albert Becker. 202p. A brief survey with some illustrative games and anecdotes. $45


A HISTORY OF CHESS, H.J.R. Murray, Oxford, 1962. From corrected sheets of the first edition (1913). h, exc with dj. 900 pages. The unqestionable authority on the history of chess, though overwhelming in its erudition. $165

AN ADVICE-TAKING CHESS COMPUTER, Zobrist & Carlson, an article taken from an issue of the Scientific American, 1973. 15p. With a good photo of Charles Kalme operating the program. An excellent survey of the fundamentals of developing a computer program to play chess. Not the entire issue. $8 

DAS BLINDSPIELEN, Eine schachpsychologisch-historische Skizze, J. Mieses, Leipzig, 1918, p, vg. covers worn. with 19 examples from Philidor to Pillsbury & Mieses. $29

CHESS FEDERATION OF CANADA YEAR BOOK 1946-47, p, vg, with a large fold-out map of Canada with chess clubs in Canada marked on it, 56p, with numerous individual articles. Includes the Resumé of the 1947 Canadaian Chess Championship, The Canada-Australia Radio Match, History  of Chess in the Maritimes, and other interesting mate $32

EM. LASKER'S CRITICISM OF CAPABLANCA'S CHESS PROPOSALS, 1 page, from the Manchester Guardian, Dec. 31, 1928. Along with DR. TARRASCH'S OPINION, 1p. Manchester Guardian, Jan. 18, 1929. and SENOR CAPABLANCA'S SUGGESTIONS ON THE FUTURE OF CHESS, 1p. Manchester Guardian.  And THE TOURNAMENT IN HOLLAND, Dec. 12, 1938, Manchester Guardian, by Dr. A, Alekhine, on the AVRO tournament.2p. $6 the lot. 

LETTERS OF MR. CHARLES GOTTLIEB DE WINDISCH ON THE AUTOMATON CHESS=PLAYER, a free translation from the German, London, 1819, xerox copy. 35 pages in the original. $18

ISSUES OF "OUR FOLDER" (publication of The Good Companion Chess Problem Club) Jan 1, 1921 with special historically interesting articles. a) Vol. X, #8, March, 1923, Chess Problems by Arnaldo Ellerman & Giorgio Guidelli.     

      32p. With biographies of each composer. $15.  b) Vol. VIII, #4, " Morphy Family", 7p. with drawings and photos of Paul Morphy and his antecedents. part 1. The other 20 pages on chess problems, $20. c) Vol. 10, #8, March, 1923. "Philidor's "Good Companions" and Patrons. 11 pages on Phildor including the history of the London 1777 edition of his famous Analyse du jeu des Echecs. Along with drawings of many of the subscribers of his famous book. $25.   d) Vol. XI, #4, Jan. 1924,with a 4p article "Ajeeb when played by Mr. A. B. Hodges" , 2 more pages of Paul Morphy's Dinner Companions, and the rest on chess problems. $20.   e) Vol. XI, #6, Feb. 1924, 4p on chess problems. $5  f) 3p article on William Meredith and his four sisters plus 2p on the automaton Mephisto plus a page on the results off the chess problem solving competition. Three of the amateur solvers solved all 12 of the problems with Isaac Kashdan  first with all 12 of the problems in 1 hour and 5 minutes. In the master class Reti  was first with solving 11 of the problems in 1 hour and 23 minutes with Maroczy and Tartakower tied for 2nd and 3rd getting 10 in 2 hours. Alekhine solved 9 in 1 hour and 1 minute.  $10.  g) Vol. VIII, #9, May 1, 1921, 11 pages on the Morphy Family plus the grave suites of McDonnell and De La Bourdonnais in London. Plus chess problem material. $30

CHESS TALES AND CHESS MISCELLANIES, W. Fiske, London, Bombay, & Calcutta, 1912. h, exc, with nice frontispiece photo of  Fiske. xiii +  428p. Includes 37 Chess Tales, Miscellanies, Sketches, Notes, etc plus 16 illustrations. Included are several good items on Morphy incl. photos of the Lequesne bust of Morphy. $185.  b) h, vg, covers rubbed, $165

CURIOUS CHESS FACTS, I. Chernev, Black Knight Press NY, 1937, 64p. 206 Ripley-like curiosities such as this gem: At Monte Carlo 1902 it took Chigorin 144 moves to beat Mason, but only 8 moves to lose to Marshall. With some good photos as well. p, exc, $42

FOUR-HANDED CHESS, Geo. H. Verney, London, 1881. h, exc, 32p. This variant looks appealing because it requires only a special board which does not take ny great skill to construct and requires no special pieces and only minor changes in the rules. $125.  

1976 ISSUE OF CHESS LIFE & REVIEW with cover Illustration of Morphy's hand life size. $6

A PICTURE HISTORY OF CHESS, F. Wilson, p, vg, a wonderful collection of chess photos, Dover Publications, NY, 1981. A book Dover should reprint! 182p.inscribed by Wilson, $28. b) p, exc, $25


BILO CERNE VZPOMINANI, J. Vesely, Prague, 2008, h, mint, a history of Czech chess from about the 1930s to today with some games and many short biographical pieces. 189p. $35


CHESS - THE HISTORY OF A GAME, R. Eales, London, 1985,h, exc, with dj. 240p. An excellent summary and much more readable than the great classic of Murray's. $30


CHESS TOURNAMENT CROSSTABLES, Vol. I (1851-1900), J. Gaige, Phila, 1969, h, vg,‡, scarce, 1 of 250 copies, a few check marks, $210


DAS ERSTE JARTAUSEND DER SCHACHLITTERATUR (850-1880), A. v.d. Linde, Berlin, 1881, 112p, disbound (loose pages). The first page has a tear with a piece missing but with no loss of text. Scarce. $85


FAKE AUTOMATA IN CHESS, Ken Whyld, Caistor, 1994, ltd ed(105 copies), large format, 70p. A bibliography with descriptions of some 767 entries. $45


GERMAN CHESS PERSONALIA, J. Gaige, Philadelphia, 1980, r, exc, 61p. $20.


GESCHICHTE DES MITTELALTERLICHEN, VORZUGSWEISE DES DEUTSCHEN SCHACHSPIELS, H.F. Massmann, h, exc, with the full set of fold-out tables showing drawings of the Isle of Lewis chessmen, plates from Selenus, etc. This is the 1980 DDR facsimile edition of the original 1839 edition. 222p + a 4p ³Nachwort² by Burkhard Richter in 1980. $60

REMINISZENZEN AN CAMBRIDGE SPRINGS, etc, W. Kübel, 14p, German, p, exc, $10

 SIMPSON'S - IN -THE -STRAND 1850,  A very nice photo of the exterior of this famous eatery chess and emporium some 163 years ago. Post card. $8

SIMPSON'S-IN-THE -STRAND cartoon postcard drawn by H. Bateman for Simpsons-in-the-Strand, the famous Old English Eating House. $5

SIMPSON'S-IN-THE-STRAND, Post card drawing showing it as "the Grand Cigar Divan", $5

SIMPSON'S-IN-THE-STRAND, Post card drawing showing it as a chess club and restaurant a century ago. $5

SIMPSON'S-IN-THE-STRAND, Folder  drawing showing it as a restaurant and chess club with it's history from 1828 to 1965, with a typical bill of fare including Clear Turtle Soup, Thck Ox Tail Soup, Grilled Dover Sole, Roast Sirloin of Beef, and Yorkshire Pudding among other goodies.  $10

CHESS DIRECTORY 1951, Cleveland Chess Association, ring bd, exc. Thomas Kelly, a directory with addresses + 13p with photos and of an account of "Chess in the Late Twenties" concerning Cleveland Chess in that era. $12

DAS SCHACHLEBEN IN SOWJET-RUSSLAND. A. Aljechin. Kagan Publishing, Berlin (1921). XVI + 16p. p, vg, fc chipped. Alechin's ist chess publication in  a book. With an introduction by Tartakower. $20 

1988 CHESS CALENDAR, Hanon Russell, featuring photos of Marshall at different times in his career, along with notable chess dates for most days. p, exc, $10

ALS J(acques) MIESES TO DR. M. NIEMEIJER, Sept. 30. 1938, 1 page. Writes about Bilguer's "Handbuch" and Kmoch's "Nachtrage". In German. Niemeijer was one of the greatest of chess bibliophiles and collectors.  $150

ALS POSTCARD FROM LOTHAR SCHMID TO A TOP US CHESS COLLECTOR OF THE 60s & 70s TO THREE WORLD CHAMPIONS (EUWE, BOTVINNIK, & ESTRIN(Postal Chess) each of whom signed the card (depicting a chess scene from a 1640 copper plate) along with Schmid, $200

ZUR GESCHICHTE UND LITERATUR DES SCHACHSPIELS, T. von der Lasa, Leipzig, 1897. T. von der Lasa. Surely one of the top scholars on the history and literature of chess ever. h, exc, 269p. Slight scuffing of the spine and  covers. Entirely in German.  $295

CHESS - THE HISTORY OF A GAME, R. Eales, London, 1985, h, exc, with dj, 240p. The best readable history of chess. Murray is still regarded as the longest and most authoritative history, but this book gives the best overview whereas Murray gets enmeshed in details beyond compare. $20

THE OXFORD COMPANION TO CHESS, D. Hooper & K. Whyld, 1st ed., h, exc, with dj, Oxford/New York, 1984. 407p, exc. Still the best(along with the later edition, London/NY 1992) chess encyclopedia in my opinion, although others such as the Russian encyclopedia, have more content, especially entries of  Eastern bloc countries. The authors did a prodigious job in checking facts and sifting through vast amounts of information. However, there are also faults; e.g. In the Morphy section: "He shared his family's belief that chess was no fit occupation for a grown man, but he was not capable of doing anything else." Absurd. No doubt he could have succeeded in many  other occupations but for the fact that the world could not accept him as such.  When I questioned why the first edition failed to include Fred Reinfeld  (then and possibly still today) as the most prolific chess author of all time, Whyld told me that Reinfeld had not added anything to the "theory" of the game! So tell me what these masters did in that regard—as a mere sampling of hundreds more: Antoshin, Asztalos, Barda, Thomas Barnes, Johann Bauer,...  And these, along with scores more of lesser-known players, may well have left their marks in the history of the game, but don't tell me that these authors or anyone else could define those contributions to chess "theory". I think Bauer is most famous for being the victim of a (today) standard kingside attack by Lasker! The fact is that an author's opinion plays a large role in who gets in such books. In the case of Reinfeld, he had legitimate tournament wins over  virtually every top US player of the 1930's to 1950's. He also had a fabulous memory for outstanding masterpieces. But the greatest US player left out of either edition was Charles Kalme of Philadelphia whose talent was at least as great as Fischer's. Had he not opted to become a professional mathematician instead of a professional chessplayer, we likely would have had a totally different twist to chess history.   $50

DIE SCHACHSPIELER—THE CHESS-PLAYERS, by MORITZ RETZSCH, front page & verso with the famous illustration and the other side description of the illustration Satan Playing at Chess with Man, for his Soul. The single leaf of the first page of The Saturday Magazine of May 6th, 1837  in a folder. $95

HET SCHAAKSPEL IN DE KUNST- EN CULTUURHISTORIE, E. H. Schuyer, Bussum, 1968, h, exc, with chess bookplate of the famous collector, James Barrett of Buffalo, NY. Dutch. A very interesting sampling of some of the many fascinating aspects of chess culture in areas such as art, postage stamps, chess bookplates, Chess pieces, chess bibliography,... Many illustrations.  $20

MAELZEL'S CHESS PLAYER, THE SOUTHERN LITERARY MESSENGER, April, 1836, entire issue with covers. pp 318-326. Extremely scarce. Also includes an interesting review of two books by : 1. J.K. Paulding titled Slavery in the United States, Harper & Brothers; and 2. The South Vindicated from the Treason and Fanaticism of the Northern Abolitionists. Philadelphia: Published by H. Manly. p, vg, covers chipped at edges. ELRS.   $350

50 JAHRE SAALE-SCHACHBUND 1882 - 1932, Kick & Buchholz, p, vg, Magdeburg, 1932. scarce, 46p. articles, photos and with 4 games (2 blindfold) by Paul Lipke. German. $85

WESTERN CHESS IN BRITISH INDIA, Vijay Pandit, Nottingham, 2011, 100 numbered copies. 168p. 331 games, some with light notes.  p, mint, $32

NA SAHOVSKIM OLIMPIJADAMA, M. Petronic, Belgrade, 1971, 112p. Serbo-Croat. Gives the history if the Chess Olimpiads #'s 1 to 19 with some games, some commentary, and all the x-tables. p, exc, ELRS. $24.  b) p, vg, $22.

60 YEARS IN THE SAME ROOM - A HISTORY OF THE PAIGNTON CHESS CONGRESS, R.H. Jones, Exmouth, 2010,157p. p, mint, games, photos, commentary.  A very nice job. $26

A CATALOG OF CHESSPLAYERS & PROBLEMISTS, revised ed, Jeremy Gaige, Philas, 1969, h, exc, 1st ed,



A CATALOG OF U.S.A. CHESS PERSONALIA, J. Gaige, Worcester, 1980, p, exc, 48p. A fascinating little book due in large part to the author's suggestions for "Helpful Hints for Research"$20


A HISTORY OF CHESS IN SOUTH AFRICA, L. Reitstein, Capetown, 2003, autographed by the author. Large format. An extremely good record of chess in South Africa from the earliest days up to WWII and beyond. Many games, photos, and records of events there. How nice it would be if we had such records for all the chess playing countries! 110 annotated games. A very nice layout on good paper. $55


AUSTRALIAN CHESS 1915 to 1930, A. Wright, ringbd, mint, 397 games, a few photos, not paginated, results. $25

BULGARSKIYAT SHAKHMAT,V. Snimki, an history of 75 years of Bulgarian chess in hundreds of excellent photos. First-rate documentation of this country's chess history and especially appropriate now that the Bulgarian player Topolov is one of the world's very top players.223p. Included are photos of other famous players such as Alekhine, Keres, Botvinnik, Bronstein, Fischer, among others. p, mint, $48


CAMBRIDGE CHESS, R. G. Eales, CHESS, Sutton Coldfield, w/o date, p, exc, 92p. Interesting in view of the great history of the university, but one might hope to find some examples of the games of a few of the famous non-chess people who can claim Cambridge as their alma mater even if such games would lack the master's skill. Players such as Keene, Hartston, Milner Barry, and Penrose are represented.Nevertheless 64 games with decent notes. p, exc, $20

CHESS IN WALES, M. Griffiths, Olomouc, 339p, A great deal of local information the must have been quite difficult to find. Unfortunately not many games are given. h, exc, $40

DIE SPIEL~GEHEIMNISSE DER GROSSEN SCHACHKÄMPFER VON GIOACHINO BIS BOBBY FISCHER, H. Opferman, Düsseldorf/Wien, 1978, h, mint. An outstanding book which analyzes the styles of the greatest players. $43


PAMPHLET OF "NOTES AND QUERIES" July 19, 1902  REGARDING THE LOST MANUSCRIPT OF THE REVEREND LEWIS ROU, Landi Press, Florence, 1902.  18 pages, with the ANY INFORMATION note on the verso of the title page

    This title page for what I believe is the first printing of this item begins with:

                     THE LOST MANUSCRIPT 

                                        of the 

                            REVEREND LEWIS ROU'S 

                       "CRITICAL REMARKS UPON THE


                                written in 1734 and dedicated to 

                                                   HIS EXCELLANCY

                                              WILLIAM COSBY

                                        Governor of New York

                As of  2012 I believe that the original Rou manuscript has still not been found.  This document above in its original version with the original flaking thin-paper wrapping.  $225

ROU MANUSCRIPT VARIANT    The variant publication of the above with a different title page and with a library release stamp and accompanied by a separate (chipped) page  titled "A Missing Manuscript" and offering a reward of $300 for accurate information indicating the present whereabouts (with permission to copy the same) of the MS work, written by the Reverend Lewis Rou, etc.  $180

ROMANTISCH SCHAAK,H. Kramer, Amsterdam, 1956, 125p. 30 fine games played in the romantic swashbuckling style. $28

SCHACH, in an issue of DER SPIEGEL of 1958 on the Munich chess Olympiad. A 13-page article of excellent content, e.g. some fine unfamiliar photos such as one of Euwe lecturing to a mathematics class, a fin photo of Tarrasch in action in a tournament game, Capa at a simul, Keres analysing with Petrosian while Tal, Botvinnik, Bronstein, and Flohr look on. Entire issue. $23


SLOVAR SHAKHMATISTA, A. Smirnov, Leningrad, (1929), h, exc, ELRS, FGML, 518p. Russian chess dictionary. $90. b) h, good, front endpaper loose, light staining at bottom of some pages, $55

SHIPLEY SCRAPBOOK - VOLUME 3, Titled "RUY LOPEZ, QUEEN PAWN GAMES, MISCELLANEOUS", r, consists of newspaper chess colums, xeroxes of largely his columns in Philadelphia papers, Many otherwise unknown games. Some games were written in by hand. $35




LES JEUX D'ECHECS NON ORTHODOXES, Joseph Boyer, Paris, 1951, 100p, p, exc, all sorts of different boards, different pieces, different rules, etc. $45


NOUVEAUX JEUX D'ECHECS NON ORTHODOXES, Joseph Boyer, Paris, 1954, p, exc, further variants etc, 100p, $40


THE ADVENTURE OF CHESS, Edward Lasker, NY, 1950, h, exc, with dj(sl. chipped), 296p. A lively, anecdotal account of the romance of chess and its players throughout the ages. I am not sure that Lasker remembers everything correctly, however. One example is on page 88 where he states that Emanuel wrote a book on algebra which several leading mathematicians  told him (Edward Lasker) was highly original.  Although Emanuel did write several papers on topics in algebra that were published, I have yet to see any such book on algebra by Emanuel that was published.  His statement implies that it was published ("He wrote a book in the field of algebra, which several leading mathematicians have told me was highly original.")  Wildhagen, a professional philosopher, supposedly once said that much of Lasker's philosophical ideas amounted to reinventing the wheel. $20