British Championship, Richmond 1912

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John Saunders
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British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by John Saunders » Wed Aug 19, 2015 7:26 pm

I've now uploaded some games from the 1912 British Championship, played at the Castle Assembly Rooms* in Richmond.

http://www.saund.co.uk/britbase/pgn/191 ... iewer.html

This comprises 32 of the 66 Championship games, 5 from the Major Open, 4 from the Women's Championship and 4 from an unusual (I suspect, fairly informal) match held on the second Monday of the congress between the 12 British Championship competitors and the 12 of the Major Open (which the Major Open XII won by 6½-5½).

The title winner was Richard Clewin Griffith, aged 40, on his first and last appearance in the British Championship. Griffith was then better known as the author of Modern Chess Openings and later became editor of BCM.

A minor snippet about Griffith which I came across earlier today whilst researching the 1912 Championship:
Morpeth Herald, Friday 30 August 1912 wrote:Mr. R.C. Griffith, who distinguished himself so greatly in the Championship Tournament at Richmond Chess Congress, is an excellent golfer, and filled in a good deal of his time with practice on the Mid-Surrey course, where he is a member. Other well-known chess-players to whom a golf bag is an essential are Mr. Beamish (another excellent golfer) and Mr. A.J. Mackenzie, Mr. E. Macdonald, and Mr. Wardhaugh (who are among the long handicap brethren).
I see Mr Beamish has been mentioned in another thread, earlier today.

My thanks to Gerard Killoran for help with collecting the game scores.

* note to Richard James: I'm not quite sure where the Castle Assembly Rooms are or were in Richmond, though I haven't tried very hard yet. Any idea?
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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Wed Aug 19, 2015 7:30 pm

John Saunders wrote: * note to Richard James: I'm not quite sure where the Castle Assembly Rooms are or were in Richmond, though I haven't tried very hard yet. Any idea?
Richard has said a bit about the Castle Assembly Rooms in an earlier thread:

http://www.ecforum.org.uk/viewtopic.php ... 19&#p98119

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John Saunders
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by John Saunders » Wed Aug 19, 2015 7:48 pm

Thanks, Chris - that pretty much answers my question.
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Brian Denman
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by Brian Denman » Wed Aug 19, 2015 9:09 pm

I enclose a couple of games from the Major Open event at Richmond.


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John Saunders
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by John Saunders » Thu Aug 20, 2015 2:18 am

Many thanks, Brian. I have added those games to the Britbase file.
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Tim Harding
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by Tim Harding » Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:11 pm

John Saunders wrote:Many thanks, Brian. I have added those games to the Britbase file.
I did not research the 1912 Championship in any detail as it is the only one of the 1904-1914 series that Blackburne did not compete in.

However in the course of my research into the Brown brothers of Dudley I came across (with Gerard Killoran's help) three games by Frank Brown from the Major Open which do not as yet appear to be in the Britbase file. I don't seem to have noted (or been told by Gerard) what was the source for his game with O'Hanlon.







I also note that the 1912 Britbase file has "Schories" for the Sheffield player (also mentioned in my post today about Chester 1914) but in my Blackburne book I have "Shories" which was the spelling I (almost at least) invariably found in primary sources, e.g. the reports by Gunsberg and Hoffer about Ostend 1907 and Teichmann's book of that tournament.
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David McAlister
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by David McAlister » Thu Aug 20, 2015 3:25 pm

A source for John J. O'Hanlon -v- Frank Brown, Richmond 1912 is the Northern Whig for 27th March 1913 (with notes by O'Hanlon). Times given as White: 1 hour 26 minutes; Black: 1 hour 55 minutes.

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John Saunders
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by John Saunders » Thu Aug 20, 2015 5:19 pm

Many thanks to Tim for the games and David for the source data.

Re Schories/Shories: I thought about this for a while before plumping for Schories, his German name, as given on Wikipedia and in the ChessBase Player Encyclopaedia. He was first and last a German, despite living in the UK for quite a while. For printed material, it makes good sense to use the name he went under while resident in the UK, but for database purposes it might be better to stick with his real name, so that his games are allocated to the right entry in the ChessBase player index when people add Britbase files to their databases. I take a different line with native Brits and Irish players, however - using full names helps researchers to look people up on family history sites, etc.
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Richard James
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by Richard James » Fri Aug 21, 2015 5:09 pm

Richard Holmes (who is by profession an archivist) has been in touch to tell me that the Richmond & Twickenham Times reported extensively on the tournament. Their reports are available on microfiche in the Richmond Local Studies collection.

I must have a look at some point.

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John Saunders
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Re: British Championship, Richmond 1912

Post by John Saunders » Thu Aug 27, 2015 6:52 pm

I had a look at the Richmond Local Studies Collection today. There are indeed two excellent reports on the 1912 British Championship in the Richmond & Twickenham Times editions of 17 and 24 August 1912, with lots of background 'colour' and full round-by-round results of each section. Also, a couple of game scores, though not from the top section (they were A Compton Ellis (Kew) vs E Davidson Palmer (N. London), 1st Class A, and R Henderson (Kew) vs CG Verey (Dover), 3rd Class B.) I didn't actually take copies of any material today (it was more of an exploratory visit), but intend to the next time I go. I may also look at the Richmond Herald, which the librarian told me they also have on microfiche, to see if that offers anything. The staff there are extremely helpful. Unfortunately Richmond Reference Library doesn't hold back numbers of The Field.

The librarian I spoke to was able to show me some old photos and cuttings relating to the Castle Assembly Rooms. None of them were actually of the chess in progress but I saw a couple of the ballroom where play actually took place (recognisable from the photo which Gerard Killoran found in the Illustrated London News - scroll down to see the photo). The still elegant building is now used as offices by PayPal!
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