Manhattan Chess Club
In 1877 chess players met at the Cafe Logeling, 49 Bowery Street in lower Manhattan. Mr. Logeling was a chess enthusiast and eventually built a room in the back of the cafe for chess.
On November 24, 1877, it was decided to form a chess club. There was discussion to name it the Metropolitan, Morphy, or Manhattan Chess Club.
On December 1, 1877, 37 members showed up for the first meeting. The entrance fee was $1 per person and dues were $4 per year.
On October 2, 1879, the Constitution of the Manhattan Chess Club was adopted.
On May 7, 1883, the Manhattan Chess Club of the City of New York was incorporated in the State of New York. Its board of directors included Leopold Hellwitz, George T. Green, Roscow Channing, Louis Cohn, L.D. Cohn, F.M. Teed, William M. De Visser, J.D. Peters, Charles Saulson, Isaac Rice, and Charles M. Harris. An initiation fee was $10, and the annual dues were $16.
In 1883, Johannes Zukertort was made an honorary member.
In May 1884, the group moved to 22 East 17th Street.
In 1884, George T. Green was elected President of the Manhattan CC. He served as President until 1887.
The club hosted the 1886 world championship (Steinitz-Zukertort) and the 1890-91 world chess championship (Steinitz-Gunsberg).
In May 1889, the club moved to 22 West 27th Street.
In 1890-91 Steinitz played Gunsberg in a world championship match at the Manhattan Chess Club. The President of the Manhattan Chess Club was Isaac Rice.
In May 1892, the club moved to 105 East 22nd Street in the United Charities Building.
In October-November 1892, Emanuel Lasker defeated the top 8 players of the Manhattan CC in a series of matches. He defeated Hanham, D. Baird, J. Baird, Ryan, and Isaacson, all 3-0. He also defeated Simonson, Hodges, and Delmar.
In 1894, the President of the Manhattan CC was A. Foster Higgins. There were 124 members.
In 1894 Steinitz and Lasker met at the Manhattan Chess Club to negotiate thier proposed world championship chess match. The club hosted the first 8 games of the Lasker-Steinitz world championship match.
In 1895, Emanuel Lasker joined the Manhattan Chess Club. In 1895, the first cable match was played between the Manhattan Chess Club and the British Chess Club.
In 1899, William Steinitz resigned as an honorary member from the Manhattan Chess Club.
In 1901, members of the Manhattan Chess Club defeated the Franklin Chess Club of Philadelphia.
In 1903, Julius Finn won the Manhattan CC Rice Gambit tournament.
In 1903, Aristidez Martinez was the President of the Manhattan CC.
In 1905, the Manhattan CC defeated the Berlin CC in a cable match, with the score of 4-2. The trophy was an autograph portrait of President Theodore Roosevelt.
From 1905 to 1910 the Club was located at the Carnegie Hall Building on 56th Street.
In 1905 Jose Capablanca joined the Manhattan Chess Club and beat its champion.
From 1910 to 1923 the Club was located at the Sherman Square Hotel, then to Beacon Hotel.
In 1905, Capablanca, at the age of 17, visited the Manhattan Chess Club and beat its champion.
In 1908, Otto Roething won the Manhattan CC rapid knockout tournament, knocking out Jose Capablanca on a coin toss.
In 1909, the Manhattan CC organized a chess match between Frank Marshall and Jose Capablanca. Capablanca won with 8 wins, 1 loss, and 14 draws.
In October-November 1918, the Manhattan CC sponsored an international chess tournament. It was held at the club’s parlor in the Sherman Square Hotel. Five countries were represented including the United States, Cuba, Canada, France, and Serbia. The event was won by Capablanca.
The club organized the New York international tournaments of 1924 (won by Emanuel Lasker) and 1927 (won by Jose Capablanca).
During the Depression, the Club moved to a basement on Broadway and 73rd Street.
In the 1930s, Harold Phillips was President of the Manhattan CC.
In 1932 to 1941, the Club was located at the Alamac Hotel.
In 1934, the Manhattan CC won the Metropolitan Chess League.
In 1938, women were finally allowed to join the club.
In 1941 to 1956 the Club was located at 100 Central Park South. Maurice Wertheim helped move the chess club to better quarters.
On March 7, 1942, Capablanca suffered a stroke at the Manhattan Chess Club while analyzing a chess game. He died the next day at the age of 53.
In 1945, the Manhattan CC was the site of the American team in the USA vs USSR radio match. The USSR won 11 out of 20.
In 1947, the Manhattan CC lost to the Club of La Plata in Argentina in a radio chess match by the score of 3.5 to 6.5. The Manhattan CC team included Reshevsky, Kashdan, Denker, Horowitz, Kevitz, Pinkus, Pavey, Kramer, Shainswit, and Donald Byrne. Only Reshevsky was able to win. .
Maurice Wertheim (1886-1950) was president of the Manhattan Chess Club in the 1940s. He was an American investment banker and philanthropist. He was the father of American historian Barbara Tuchman.
In the late 1940s and early 1950s. Sidney F. Kenton was the club's director of activities. Junior members were not welcomed under Kenton's tenure. He did, however, allow Robert and Donald Byrne join the club.
In 1948, Arthur Bisquier won the Manhattan Chess Club championship at the age of 18, the youngest player up to that time. He won 7 and drew 2 games. Also in 1948, George Kramer, age 18, won the Manhattan CC Masters Tourney.
In 1951, the Manhattan CC hosted the Wertheim Memorial, won by Reshevsky.
In the 1950s Maurice Kasper, a wealthy New York textile manufacturer, was the president of the Manhattan Chess Club. He later became an officer of the American Chess Foundation. Morris Steinberg was the vice president of the Manhattan Chess Club.
In 1952, William Lombardy joined the Manhattan CC.
Gisela Kahn Gresser (1906-2000) was a regular at the Manhattan CC, always taking lessons from Hans Kmoch. She won the U.S. women's championship 9 times and was the first woman to become a U.S. master. She died in 2000 at the age of 94.
In June 1955, Bobby Fischer joined the Manahttan Chess Club. He soon won the 'C' section, then the 'B' section.
In 1956 the Club moved to the Hotel Woodrow.
In April 1956, Bobby Fischer won the Manhattan Chess Club 'A' Reserve championship.
In 1956, Fischer won the Manhattan Chess Club Rapid Transit with the score of 10 out of 10.
In the 1950s and 1960s the Club's secretary by Hans Kmoch and the club was located in the Henry Hudson Hotel on West 59th St.
In 1969, the Manhattan Chess Club, with Bobby Fischer playing board 1, defeated the Marshall Chess Club 8 to 4.
In 1971, the Club moved from the Henry Hudson Hotel to East 60th St off Fifth Avenue.
In 1971, Bobby Fischer won the Manhattan Chess Club 5-minute championship.
In 1973, there were over 400 members of the Manhattan Chess Club.
In 1974, the Club moved to 155 E. 55th St.
In 1976, the Club sponsored the first New York International since 1951. The winners were Norman Weinstein, Anatoly Lein, and Leonid Shamkovich.
In 1984, the club moved to Carnegie Hall at West 57th Street and 7th, 10th floor.
The Club later moved to 353 West 46th Street between 8th and 9th Avenue on "Restaurant Row." Traditionally, the club was supported by the patronage of Wall Street executives. When they passed away, the American Chess Foundation, which owns the building, fell into the hands of non-chessplayers. They ordered the Manhattan Chess Club to move.
In 1985, Josh Waitzkin joined the Manhattan Chess Club.
In 1992, the Club and the American Chess Foundation purchased a building at 353 W. 46th St.
In 2001, the Club moved to the New Yorker Hotel, Suite 1521, 481 8th Avenue. It was open on weekdays from 6 pm to midnight and on weekends from 11am to 11pm.
On February 1, 2002, the Manhattan Chess Club closed. It existed for 124 years, the second-oldest chess club in the United States (next to the Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club in San Francisco). Its last president was Jeff Kossak.
1879 not known
1880 not known
1881 Frank Melville Teed (1856-1929)
1882 not known
1883 Dr. Gustave Simonson (1864-1935)
1884 John S. Ryan (1849-1914)
1885 Eugene Delmar (1841-1909)
1886 John S. Ryan
1887 Samuel (Simon) Lipschuetz (1863-1905)
1888 David Graham Baird (1854-1913)
1889 Samuel Lipschuetz
1890 D. G. Baird
1891 D. G. Baird
1892 James Moore Hanham (1840-1923)
1893 Albert Beauregard Hodges (1861-1944)
1894 not known
1895 D. G. Baird
1896 Louis Schmidt, Jr. (1855-1938)
1897 not known
1898 D.G. Baird and Gustave H. Koehler
1898-1899 Albert B. Hodges
1899 James Hanham
1900 Samuel Lipschuetz
1900-1901 Frank J. Marshall (1877-1944)
1901 Frank Marshall
1903 J.M. Hanham, Jacob Halper, Harold Phillips (1874-1967)
1904 D.G. Baird
1905 Gustave Koehler
1905-1906 Albert W. Fox (1881-1964)
1907 Paul F. Johner (1887-1938)
1908 Albert Pulvermacher
1909 Manuel Ayala, Otto Roething (1865-1915), Leon Rosen (1869-1942)
1909-1910 Frank J. Marshall
1911 Jacob Rosenthal (1881-1954)
1912 Magnus Smith (1869-1934)
1913 Magnus Smith
1913-1914 Abraham Kupchik (1892-1970)
1915 Abraham Kupchik
1916 Abraham Kupchik
1917 Abraham Kupchik
1918 Jose Capablanca (1888-1942)
1918-1919 Abraham Kupchik
1919-1920 Abraham Kupchik, Oscar Chajes (1873-1928)
1920-1921 Dawid Janowski (1868-1927) in play-off over Roy T. Black (1888-1962)
1921-1922 Morris A. Schapiro (1903-1996)
1922-1923 Morris A. Schapiro
1923-1924 Oscar Chajes
1924-1925 Abraham Kupchik
1925-1926 Abraham Kupchik
1926-1927 Geza Maroczy (1870-1951)
1927-1928 Abraham Kupchik
1928-1929 Alexander Kevitz (1902-1981)
1929-1930 Isaac Kashdan (1905-1985)
1931 Isaac Kashdan
1932-1933 A. Kevitz on tiebreak over Robert Willman (1908-1977).
1933-1934 Robert Willman
1934-1935 A. Kevitz after playoff with Isaac Kashdan
1935 Abraham Kupchik on play-off against Isaac Kashdan
1936 Alexander Kevitz on tiebreak over Albert C. Simonson (1914-1965)
1937 Isaac Kashdan after playoff with Albert C. Simonson
1938 Isaac Kashdan
1939 Jack Moskowitz (1912-2004)
1940 Arnold Denker (1914-1978)
1941 Albert S. Pinkus (1903-1984)
1942 Fred Reinfeld (1910-1964) and Sidney N. Bernstein (1911-1992) tie
1943 not known
1944 Arnold Denker after playoff with Willman
1945 Albert Pinkus
1946 Alexander Kevitz
1947 Alexander Kevitz (another source says Arnold Denker)
1948 Arthur B. Bisguier (1929- )
1949 Arthur B. Bisguier
1950 Arnold Denker, George Shainswit (1918-1997).
1950-1951 Arnold Denker
1951-1952 George Kramer (1929- )
1952-1953 Max Pavey (1918-1957)
1954 Arnold Denker
1954-1955 Alexander Kevitz and James Sherwin (1933- )
1955-1956 Max Pavey
1956-1957 Abe Turner (1924-1962)
1957-1958 Arthur B. Bisguier
1958-1959 Arthur B. Bisguier
1959-1960 Pal C. Benko (1928- )
1961 Pal C. Benko
1961-1962 Paul Brandts
1963 Bernard Zuckerman
1964 Bernard Zuckerman
1965 Pal C. Benko
1966 Pal C. Benko
1967 Pal C. Benko
1967-1968 Arthur B. Bisguier
1968-1969 Arthur B. Bisguier
1969 Arthur Bisguier
1969-1970 Arnold Denker
1971 Arthur Feurstein
1972 Walter Shipman
1973 George Kramer
1974 Alexander Kevitz, George Kramer, Walter Shipman
1975 Neil McKelvie
1976 Milorad Boskovic
1977 Alexander Kevitz
1978 Joel Benjamin
1979 Jorge Massana, Neil McKelvie
1980 Jeffrey Kastner
1981 John Fedorowicz
1982 Joel Benjamin, Vitaly Zaltsman
1983 Joel Benjamin
1984 Walter Shipman
1985 Walter Shipman
1986 Jonathan Schroer
1987 Ronald M. Young, Bernard Zuckerman
1988 Mark Ginsburg
1989 Michael Rohde
1990 Mark Ginsburg
1991 Kamran Shirazi and Zaltsman win the 114th annual Manhattan CC Ch.
1992 Joel Benjamin
1993 Jay Bonin
1994 Jay Bonin, Walter Shipman
1995 Walter Shipman
1996 John Fedorowicz, Alexander Wojtkiewiez
1997 Jay Bonin
1998 Joel Benjamin
1999 Joel Benjamin (wins for the 6th time)
2001 Leonid Yudasin