Chess in 1879

by Bill Wall


In 1879, the 2nd New York State Championship was held in Auburn. Harry A. Richmond took 1st place.


In 1879, the College Chess Club, a women's chess club, was formed.  It disbanded after too many marriages (source: British Chess Magazine 1981, p. 403)


In 1879, Richard A. Proctor showed that while it is theoretically possible to construct a chess-playing automaton, it is practically impossible because the machine would necessarily be so enormous and complicated there would scarcely be room on the earth for it, and it could not be operated.  Mr. Proctor thinks there will never be a chess automaton that can play a game unless there is “Life in other worlds than ours.” (source: The Times-Picayune, Aug 5, 1879)


On Jan 15, 1879, Mikhail Chigorin won at  St Petersburg.


On Mar 13, 1879, Adolf Anderssen died in Breslau from a heart ailment.  He was one of the strongest chess players of his day.  His obituary ran 19 pages in the May, 1879 issue of Deutsche Schachzeitung. He took part in 12 tournaments between 1851 and 1878 and won the first place prize in 7 of these events (London 1851, London 1862, Hamburg 1869, Barmen 1869, Baden 1870, Crefeld 1871, Leipzig 1876). He appeared on the prize list of all 12 tournaments he entered.


In April 1879, the publication of the Westminster Papers chess journal ended.


On April 2, 1879, Carl Theodor Goering committed in Eisenach, Germany.  He was 37.  He was a German chess master and a philosophy professor.


On April 23, 1879, George Walker died.  He was an English chess player.


On Jul 20, 1879, the 1st German Chess Federation was held Leipzig.  Berthold Englisch (1851-1897) took 1st place.


In Aug 1879, the City of London Chess Club Championship was won by Henry Bird.


On Aug 19, 1879, the 1st New Zealand Championship was held in Christchurch. Henry Hookham (1824-1898) took 1st place.


In September 1879, the Chess Monthly was first published by Hoffer and Zukertort.  It ran until 1896.


On Nov 27, 1879, Wolfgang Hundsdorfer was born in Munich.  He was a chess problemist.