Chess in 1886

by Bill Wall


In 1886, the Brooklyn Chess Club was formed.


In 1886, George Mackenzie beat Samuel Lipschutz (5-3, 5 draws).


In 1886, Charles Hooper shipped Ajeeb to the Eden Museum in New York.


In 1886, the first chess clock was marketed in Liverpool.


In 1886, analysis of the Caro-Kann appeared in the chess magazine, BRUDERSCHAFT.


In 1886, Florence Thomson was born in Glasgow.  She was Scottish ladies champion and participated in the Women’s World Champioonship tournament in 1937.


In 1886, William Sonneborn and Johann Berger publicized the Sonneborn-Berger method.  The actual tie-breaking method was created by Hermann Neustadtl in 1882,


In 1886, the Helsinki Chess Club was formed.


In 1886, Paul Celiere wrote The Startling Exploits of Dr. J. B. Quies.   It was translated into English in 1997.  Doctor Quies is a great lover of the game of chess who competed with the best players in Europe.  One humorous line was, “The world might fall into ruins around the Café de la Regeance, where the chess-players congregate, and not one of them would seem to be aware of the occurrence.”


On January 11, 1886 the first game for the official world chess championship began at Cartier’s Hall on 5th Avenue in New York. Steinitz wanted the U.S. flag to be placed next to him during the match, even though he still was an Austrian citizen (he became an American citizen almost three years later).  Less than 40 people were present at the start of this historical match, despite Steinitz's daughter, Flora, selling programs and photographs to earn a few extra dollars for the family. Steinitz couldn't even afford a winter coat for her daughter. The time control was 30 moves in 2 hours, with a 2 hour dinner break, then 15 moves an hour.    A demonstration chess board was first used in this world championship match, run by George Mackenzie.


On Jan 23, 1886, the first meeting of the Yorkshire Chess Club was held.


On Feb 3, 1886, Marcus Kann died.  He was born in 1820.  He was an Austrian chess player.


On Feb 20, 1886, the first telephone match, between Manchester and Liverpool, was played.  The cities were 40 miles apart. Two games were played.  Liverpool won 1.5-0.5.


On Mar 29, 1886,  Steinitz (+10=5-5) defeated Zukertort, 12.5-7.5, in New Orleans.  Steinitz became the first official world champion.


On April 18, 1886, David Lawson (ne Charles Whipple) was born in Glascow, Scotland.  He wrote The Pride and Sorrow of Chess in 1976 at the age of 89.


On July 24, 1886, the estate of Paul Morphy and all of his belongings and trophies were sold out at a public auction in New Orleans.  His chess set sold at auction for $1,500.  It was purchased by Walter Denegre acting for the New York and Brooklyn Chess Club.  (source: New York Times, July 25, 1886)


In July-August 1886, the first British Amateur championship was held in London.  Walter Gattie took 1st place and won the Newnes Cup.


In August 1886, the first Bavarian championship was held in Munich.  Hermann Neustadtl took 1st place.


1886.08.1886, Istvan Abonyi was born in Budapest, Hungary.  He was a Hungarian chess master.


On Sep 9, 1886, Hermann von Hanneken died in Neunahr, Germany.  He was a Prussian General and German chess player.


On Sep 26, 1886, Alfred Harksen was born in Ystad, Sweden.  He was a Swedish chess player and chess composer. 


In Nov 1886, a telegraphic match between London and St Petersburg was played. 


On Nov 3, 1886, Reinhold Max Bluemich was born in Germany.   He was a German chess master and editor.


On Nov 7, 1886, Aron Nimzovich was born in Riga.  He was Russian champion in 1914.  He was Nordic champion in 1924 and 1934.