Chess in LIFE
by Bill Wall
In the Dec 14, 1936 issue of LIFE magazine, page 26, there is some art surrealism. Artwork by Victor Brauner shows as chessboard pattern on page 26.
In the Feb 22, 1937 issue of LIFE, page 48, there are photos of Emanuel Lasker playing simultaneous chess. He played 31 Russians, winning 29 and drawing two against some Russian collective farmers of Byazhsk. The caption says that Lasker quit Nazi Germany in 1933 and set up an academy in Moscow to earn a living by teaching Communists how to play chess. He had previously decided that chess was a “dead” game with “no connection with anything human.” He said that chess was far inferior to bridge.
In the Sep 6, 1937 issue of LIFE, page 54, there is a photo of Winifred Sackville StonerJr, a one-time child prodigy, teaching the children of Mrs. Walter Hardesty how to play chess.
In the Apr 25, 1938 issue of LIFE, page 61, there is a photo of Samuel Reshevsky studying a chess position. The caption of the photo says, “Chess Champion defends title.”
In the June 13, 1938 issue of LIFE, there is a photo of actress Gertrude Lawrence playing a game of chess with her secretary.
In the Nov 14, 1938 issue of LIFE, page 52, there is a photo of students playing chess between classes at the University of Pittsburgh.
In the Jan 15, 1940 issue of LIFE, page 80, is a photo of George Koltanowski playing blindfold chess. The photo shows him playing 10 players at once blindfolded in Wellesley, Massachusetts. He won five, drew four, lost one.
In the Jan 29, 1940 issue of LIFE, page 48, there are photos of chessmen from different nations. The title of the article is “Chessmen of every age and nation are among world’s art masterpieces.” The pictures show an English ivory set, a Siamese ivory set, an old Japanese ivory set, and old Chinese ivory set, a French set carved in 1750, and Indian ivory set, a German set, and a modern American set made in ceramics. There is also a photo of 63-year-old Frank Marshall playing chess at the Marshall Chess Club. There is an article (p. 49-53) and photos of some opening traps and a Marshall-Chigorin game played at Monte Carlo in 1902. Another chess article on p. 54 it titled “Yale chess team wins Belden-Stephens trophy from Harvard, Princeton, Dartmouth.” A college tournament was being played at the Marshall Chess Club. Before the tournament, Harvard had been the favorite, as they had won four years in a row. This collegiate tournament of four universities started in 1892, to encourage college men to play chess. Columbia University had entered instead of Dartmouth when the tournament first started. But in the years that followed, Columbia was too good, winning 10 straight times. So they kicked out Columbia and added Dartmouth in 1930 instead.
In the Feb 19, 1940 issue of LIFE, page 2, in a letter to the editor, a reader commented that LIFE needed a new chess editor or LIFE’s editors need a punch in their collective nose. It was all about a possible mistake in the notation from the Marshall-Chigorin game that appeared in the Jan 29, issue of LIFE. However, the mistake was by the reader and not by LIFE.
In the March 18, 1940 issue of LIFE, page 110, is a photo of Jim Warnack, a church editor of the Los Angeles Times, playing chess on a glass chessboard. The picture was entitled, “A Study in Study.”
In the June 24, 1940 issue of LIFE, page 69, there is a photo of some chess players in the Philadelphia Mercantile Library, which has the city’s largest public chess rooms.
In the April 7, 1941 issue of LIFE, page 101, there is a photo of Salvador Dali playing chess with his wife. The caption says that his wife always wins at chess. (note: the photo shows the chess board set up wrong – black corner square was on the right instead of the white square).
In the Nov 3, 1941 issue of LIFE, page 99, there is an article on Clipper airline flights across the Pacific, written by Clare Boothe (Luce). She describes that passengers play chess on these long flights.
In the Mar 9, 1942 issue of LIFE, page 92, there is a photo of two men in a traveling orchestra playing chess.
In the Sep 21, 1942 issue of LIFE, page 28, is an ad for Lowe pocket size peg chess set and pieces, selling for a dollar.
In the Jan 4, 1943 issue of LIFE, page 38, there is a painting of Navy pilots in the ready room playing chess while waiting orders to man planes.
In the Jan 11, 1943 issue of LIFE, page 80, there is an article on the Russian soldier. It mentions that Red Army soldiers play chess in camp and before going into battle.
In the Jun 12, 1944 issue of LIFE, on page 95, there is an article on General Walter Bedell “Beetle” Smith, Eisenhower’s Chief of Staff. The article mentions that he was a chess player.
In the Aug 14, 1944 issue of LIFE, page 35, there is an article and several photos of Marshall Tito of Yugoslavia playing chess.
In the Oct 9, 1944 issue of LIFE, page 85, is an article on the Franks. It mentions that they played chess.
In the Nov 13, 1944 issue of LIFE, page 95, there is a photo of a giant amusement arcade on 42nd West of Broadway in Manhattan. Chess is mentioned in the photo caption as being played upstairs. The article is about Broadway.
In the Dec 11, 1944 issue of LIFE, there is a long article on Billy Wilder. It mentions that he occasionally competes in chess tournaments on page 110.
In the Mar 12, 1945 issue of LIFE, page 93, there is an article on a Soviet movie about Ivan the Terrible. There is a photo in which Ivan sends a handsome chess set to Queen Elizabeth. There is also a letter to the editor about chess and go.
In the April 9, 1945 issue of LIFE, page 69, there is a photo of Emir Abdullah, rule of Trans-Jordan, playing chess with a LIFE photographer, John Phillips. The photo caption says that the emir is a fast, expert player.
In the Aug 22, 1945 issue of LIFE, page 28, is a photo of some Hollywood starlets playing chess on ice cakes. The press agent said this would help popularize the game. An article also mentioned that Linda Darnell was queen of ceremonies for a game of chess played with living models.
In the Oct 22, 1945 issue of LIFE, page 11, there is a letter to the editors about the chess play of Emir Abdullah, ruler of Trans-Jordan. There is a small photo of Abdullah playing chess. It seems that a correspondence game started between a man in Washington State and one of the palace members of the emir.
In the March 11, 1946 issue of LIFE, page 98, there is a picture of Senator Huffman of Ohio making a move on the chessboard. The board is set up wrong and he seems to be in check, but is moving a pawn, making an illegal move.
In the April 1, 1946 issue of LIFE, page 6, in a letter to the editors, a reader commented that a picture of Senator Huffman of Ohio that appeared in the March 11, 1946 issue showed that the board was set up wrong and that the move he was about to make was impossible. An editor responded that the senator’s son set up the board and the senator failed to notice the error.
In the Jun 24, 1946 issue of LIFE, page 43, there is an article on the 63-year-old chess playing emir of Trans-Jordan, Abdullah Ibn Hussein.
In the July 29, 1946 issue of LIFE, page 43, there is a photo of two reporters playing chess while waiting in a press room at Scotland Yard.
In the Sep 9, 1946 issue of LIFE, p. 115, there is an article on Molotov and Vishinsky of the Soviet Union with chess being mentioned. Both were chess players. Vishinsky taught Ernest Bevins, British Foreign Secretary, how to play chess.
In the Nov 11, 1946 issue of LIFE, p. 27, there is biography of one of LIFE’s photographers, Henry Walker. The biography mentions that he spends his spare time playing chess.
In the Nov 24, 1947 issue of LIFE, there is a long article on the movie hearings and the House Un-American Activities Committee about Communism (the McCarthy Hearings). Berthold Brecht, a German poet, playwright, and theatre director testified that he wrote the words to music composed by Communist Hanns Eisler, but he only played chess with Eisler and was not involved politically (page 148).
In the Dec 1, 1947 issue of LIFE, page 84, there is a photo of Russian officers playing chess at the Red Army club in Moscow. The chess room is decorated with wall designs resembling giant chess boards.
In the Jan 12, 1948 issue of LIFE, there is a photo of two Czech students at Charles University in Prague playing chess in the Marshall Tito hotel between rounds of studies.
In the Mar 29, 1948 issue of LIFE, page 76, there is a photo of the painting Chess Players, by Lucas van Leyden, painted in the 16th century.
In the Mar 22, 1948 issue of LIFE, page 116, there is a photo of two 7-year-old boys playing chess with a girl. The article is called “Genius School” and is about an elementary school at Hunter College, NY devoted to kids with high IQs. Many of the kids spend their spare time playing chess.
In the Nov 21, 1949 issue of LIFE, page 104, is an article about actress Jean Pearson, and her efforts to get a break on Broadway. One of the article headlines reads, “She lives alone with music, chess, yoghurt.” The article says “For a fling, she plays chess…”
In the Feb 18, 1952 issue of LIFE, page 114, there is an article on ship builders in Hamburg. The shipyard serves them lunch and adds chess for recreation during the 45-minute lunch period.
In the April 28, 1952 issue of LIFE, page 39, Mark Taimanov was quoted how world chess champion Mikhail Botvinnik trained before a match. “In the Soviet, chess matches are played in silence and smoking is forbidden. Before Botvinnik plays in a Western country, he spends three weeks with a companion, working out problems, while a radio blares and his companion blows smoke in his face.” On page 100, there is an article on Marcel Duchamp. One museum director said. “He hasn’t painted a picture since 1923. He has done practically nothing in all that time except play chess.” Duchamp’s reaction to the remark was merely to nod in happy agreement. The article contains a photo of his paintings, Chess Players and study for Chess Players. The article describes his studio dominated by its chess table.
In the Jun 9, 1952 issue of LIFE, page 152, is an article on three-dimensional chess. A mathematician named Ervand Kogbetliantz developed a three-dimensional form of chess using 8 boards stacked one above each other. He also added new kinds of chessmen.
In the Jun 30, 1952 issue of LIFE, page 10, there is a letter to the editors about the previous article on three-dimensional chess mentioned in the June 9, 1952 issue. Someone had built a chess board in 1948 to play 3-dimensional chess without adding any unnecessary new kinds of men. Also, on page 64, there is an article on Spain being an inexpensive place for U.S. tourists and there were good bargains in chess sets.
In the Jul 28, 1952 issue of LIFE, page 53, there is a photo of a painting called The Cardinals’ Chess Game. The painting is based on a Holbein painting in the Louvre.
In the Jan 12, 1953 issue of LIFE, page 5, there is a photo of Rayo (Rudolf Schmid) of Austria playing chess from inside a glass bottle. He lived in a glass bottle for a year.
In the Sep 14, 1953 issue of LIFE, page 200, there is an article about Russian GIs. They have two hours of cultural training, which includes chess.
In the Jan 18, 1954 issue of LIFE, page 103, there is an Old Crow advertisement showing a painting of a game of chess with visitors of pioneer distiller James Crow.
In the May 4, 1953 issue of LIFE, page 71, there is a photo of two undergraduates in Nigeria playing chess.
In the July 12, 1954 issue of LIFE, page 39, there is an article titled, “Stress over Chess.” A Russian chess team visited the Hotel Roosevelt in New York to play a USA chess team. The Russian team won 20 to 12. There is a photo of Larry Evans playing Mark Taimanov.
In the Jun 6, 1955 issue of LIFE, page 88, there is a photo of a Marvin Pulliam at the California Rehabilitation Center using a hydraulic arm to move chess pieces on a chess board. Pulliam who had polio, was paralyzed from the waist up.
In the Jul 11, 1955 issue of LIFE, page 116, chess is mentioned in a long article on the Russians and their bargaining. One of the reporters stopped a high Soviet diplomat and asked him if he played chess. His answer was yes. Then what did he think of an opening move in which a pawn is sacrificed in order to gain a favorable position? His answer was a smile.
In the July 18, 1955 issue of LIFE, page 22, there is an article called “Kremlin Beams Smiles to U.S.” There are photos of the U.S. visiting chess team playing the USSR chess team. The Russian team won 25 to 7. There is a photo of Russian autograph hunters besieging Sammy Reshevsky for his autograph. Another photo shows Reshevsky playing Mikhail Botvinnik. Reshevsky won the game in 41 moves. Another photo shows Premier Khrushchev with his arms around Reshevsky. In the background is Larry Evans, Isaac Kashdan, and a few other Americans and Russian chess players. The article says that 70 million Russians play chess.
In the May 7, 1956 issue of LIFE, page 79, there is a photo of a giant outdoor chess set with two-foot chessmen at a house in Palm Springs. The photo accompanied an article called “Push-button Paradise,” about modern living.
In the Aug 13, 1956 issue of LIFE, page 60, there is a mention of chess. It is part of an article on defense attorney Zola Berman, who said he was captain of his high school chess team. There is also an article entitled, Suez – Chess and Morals, but it has nothing to do with chess.
In the Feb 11, 1957 issue of LIFE, page 26, there is a photo of a couple playing outdoor chess at the Round Hill resort in Jamaica. On page 84, there is a photo of author James Jones (he wrote From Here to Eternity) playing chess at his chess table. He was playing chess by mail with his brother in Peoria. His house was filled with several dozen chess sets.
In the Sep 16, 1957 issue of LIFE, page 149, there is an article entitled, “A Chess Game for Love.” There are some photos of a living game being played in front of Marostica’s 14th century castle in Italy. It re-enacts a 500-year-old game of love, about a chess game played in 1454 for the daughter of the governor.
In the Oct 7, 1957 issue of LIFE, page 180, there is a photo of Bobby Fischer, age 14, giving a simultaneous exhibition at the Manhattan Chess Club. There are other photos of him playing and studying chess. The title of the article is “Youngest chess master in U.S.”
In the Dec 2, 1957 issue of LIFE, page 139, there is a photo of guests at a cocktail party playing chess.
In the Mar 4, 1958 issue of LIFE, page 30, is a photo of two Russian high school students playing chess. The two friends spend hours over the chessboard.
In the May 7, 1958 issue of LIFE, page 102, is a photo of some Russian chessplayers and kibitzers as they gather on the banks of the Volga River to cool off.
In the Dec 22, 1958 issue of LIFE, page 188, is a photo of some show biz ladies playing chess in the dressing room between scenes in the show at New York’s Latin Quarter.
In the Mar 3, 1959 issue of LIFE, page 112, is an article on the hangout of Russian spies in Vienna. It mentions that the Graben Café in the center of the city was a favorite meeting place for Soviet operatives. Russian agents would go there to play chess while waiting for their contacts to show up.
In the Apr 6, 1959 issue of LIFE, page 146, there is an article on Francis Parkinson Keyes and her new novel about Paul Morphy. She lived in the same house that Paul Morphy grew up in, the Beauregard House in New Orleans.
In the Sep 7, 1959 issue of LIFE, page 18, there is an article on Rene Magritte, the Belgian surrealist artist. The article mentions that after he left the Brussels Art Academy in 1918, he devoted himself to chess and painting.
In the Oct 12, 1959 issue of LIFE, page 66, there is a photo of the late Emir Abdullah of Trans-Jordan playing chess with photographer John Phillips. He got bored if he did not win in 10 minutes. “Nobody in Trans-Jordan can beat me,” he chuckled.
In the Dec 14, 1959 issue of LIFE, page 61, there is a photo of a large chessboard and pieces displayed at the Hammond Museum in North Salem, New York. The photo went with an article on women’s latest fashion – lavish lounging pants. On page 54, there is ad ad by Hickok selling chess knight cuff links for $2.50.
In the May 2, 1960 issue of LIFE, page 49, there is an article titled, “Big Campus Chess Game.” Two buildings opposite of each other on the University of California Berkeley campus have 64 windows in each 8-story building. The occupants of one building (men) play chess with the occupants of the other building (women). The students cut yard-high chessmen out of cardboard, and set them in the windows, moving them when needed. The men won after 37 moves.
In the Jun 13, 1960 issue of LIFE, page 78, there is a photo of lots of people playing chess in the Alma Ata park in Russia.
In the Aug 1, 1960 issue of LIFE, page 58, are some references to chess. The article is on Benjamin Franklin. A letter from Mme. Brillon to Benjamin Franklin mentions chess and how she missed playing chess with him. Another letter by Franklin mentions chess play in the Winter at his home in Philadelphia.
The Aug 18, 1961 issue of LIFE, page 20, has a feature called Life Guide. In the sports section, it mentions that the US Open chess tournament will be played in San Francisco through August 26, 1961.
In the Feb 16, 1962 issue of LIFE, page 66, there is a photo of Rock Hudson and a chess set at an antique shop. He bought the chess set and says he plays well and that he was a chess fan.
In the May 23, 1962 issue of LIFE, page 49, there is a photo of Marine General David Shoup playing chess with his steward. He said this of chess, “Chess is conductive to the kind of mental gymnastics with which a man must be equipped in this day and age. It makes you look all around the problem instead of looking at just one side of the pie. It makes you consider all the possibilities before you move. And that’s good training.”
In the Aug 3, 1962 issue of LIFE, page 9, in the Life Guide section, under Festivals, there is mention of a chess tournament in Sonoma, California during the Valley of the Moon Chess Festival on August 5, 1962.
In the Aug 17, 1962 issue of LIFE, page 72, there is an article on Central Park and the mentioning of chess being played in Central Park. There is a photo of players playing chess on the terrazzo boards in Central Park.
In the Sep 14, 1962 issue of LIFE, page 115, there is an article on creativity and the urge to do something out of the ordinary. One of the examples was that some young mathematician worked a way to play chess backwards.
In the Nov 30, 1962 issue of LIFE, page 99, there is an article on Robert McNamara and it mentions that he plays chess and attacks the board with vigor.
In the Jul 3, 1963 issue of LIFE, page 10, in the section called Life Guide, under sports, is a mention of a chess tournament. It was the start of the Piatigorsky Chess Tournament at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles with $10,000 in prize money.
In the Jul 19, 1963 issue of LIFE, page 82, is a reference to chess in an article on automation and electronic computers. It mentions that computers are only capable of “a fair amateur game of chess.”
In the Nov 8, 1963 issue of LIFE, page 102, there is mention of chess in an article on retirement communities. It mentions clubs devoted to chess. On page 109, there was an article on bear hunting, with the bear hunter playing the opening moves in an intricate chess game.
In the Jan 10, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 91. Is a photo of Bobby Fischer playing Samuel Reshevsky in the US championship, with the caption “Chess Wonder Boy Checkmates the Field.” Fischer had won 10 games in a row at the time of the photo.
In the Jan 31, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 21, in a letter to the editors, a reader wrote that after winning 10 chess games that LIFE cover in the Jan 10, 1964 issue, Bobby Fischer then went on to win the 11th game, thus beating every one of his opponents. This feat was unequaled in chess history.
In the Feb 21, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 97, is an article and photos of Bobby Fischer. The article is called “One-Track Mastermind – Cocky boy wonder of chess begins to grow up.” Fischer, age 20, had just won his 6th US chess championship. There is a photo of him playing on a pinball machine and playing chess on a pocket chess set while riding the subway.
In the April 17, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 113, there is a photo of boy playing chess as tennis coach Dick Skeen (coach of Jack Kramer and others) watch. The article is titled, “Brainy Plans for Tennis.” A tennis coach also teaches his students how to play chess. “Chess teaches kids to lay traps, to tease the other fellow. Just as they would in a tennis match,” he said.
In the June 12, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 109, there is a photo of Lena Bliznova, age 9, in front of a chess set. Supposedly, she had the power to separate black and white chess pieces while she was blindfolded. The article, called “Seeing Color with the Fingers,” was about the possible evidence of a new hidden sense (vision by touch).
In the Jul 7, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 18, there is an article on the World’s Fair. The article mentions that the India shop has a chess set for $50,000.
In the Sep 25, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 131, is an article on communications satellites. It mentions that in the future, there will be a Pay TV channel carrying coverage of chess tournaments throughout the world.
In the Nov 20, 1964 issue of LIFE, page 64, is a photo of Vladimir Nabokov (author of Lolita, and The Luzhin Defense) playing chess. About Luzhin Defense, he said, “In a small way, I share my hero’s fascination with chess, and I gave him, in the novel, the pocket chess set I had as a child. I’ve composed some chess problems myself, published in recondite magazines.”
In the May 7, 1965 issue of LIFE, page 60, there is an ad for Lee Classic pants that features a chess board with marble chess pieces.
In the June 18, 1965 issue of LIFE, page 72, there is a photo of Russian high-jumper Valery Brumel teaching chess to American high jumper John Thomas. Thomas was visiting Brumel at a little country dacha outside Moscow. In the 1964 Summer Olympics, Brumel took the silver medal and Thomas took the bronze medal.
In the Jul 23, 1965 issue of LIFE, page 11, is an ad for the Life World Library. When touring Italy, they recommend taking a drive to Marostica, where once each year the townsman play a human chess game with a giant board on the town square.
In the Feb 11, 1966 issue of LIFE, page 87, is a photo of a two boys playing chess at a breakfast table near the kitchen counter. The article is about ideas in houses.
In the Apr 1, 1966 issue of LIFE, pages 84 and 86, there is an article about Charlie Chaplin with a chess being mentioned. There is a photo of Marlon Brando and Sophia Loren sitting behind the chess set. Brando described Chaplin as “chess at 90 miles per hour.”
In the Aug 19, 1966 issue of LIFE, page 58, there is an article on electronic hands for amputees that is able to be used to play chess on a miniature chess board.
In the Sep 16, 1966 issue of LIFE, page 38, there is an article called “The Gabbernot has got to me” by Shana Alexander. She wrote, “I was deep in a book called A Programmed Introduction to the Game of Chess (a game I had previously been too scatterbrained to learn), and it was maddening to be continually distracted from chess by the nagging need to look something up that I didn’t really want to know.” On page 96, there is a description of Mrs. John Jacob Astor (#4) slipping off to Chinatown to play chess.
In the Nov 10, 1967 issue of LIFE, page 87, there is an article on Steve McQueen, Faye Dunaway, and director Norman Jewison about the script of The Thomas Crown Affair. The article mentions the chess scene in the movie and how it was directed. The script called for “chess with sex.” There is another article on page 52 of education in the Soviet Union. There is a photo of chess clocks and chess sets as high school students play chess with the professors.
In the Dec 22, 1967 issue of LIFE, page 62, is an article of a family who lives in a remote part of Australia. The nearest town is 400 miles way. The nearest neighbor is 120 miles away. The Mahood family plays chess. In some other parts of the outback, chess is played at the only hotel as they drink vodka and pineapple juice.
In the Oct 11, 1968 issue of LIFE, page 128, there is a photo of Marcel Duchamp playing chess with Man Ray on top of a Paris rooftop. The article, “Marcel Duchamp 1887-1968” pointed out that Duchamp ceased painting in 1923 and devoted himself to chess.
In the Nov 29, 1968 issue of LIFE, page 30, there is an article on Russians working in Egypt and chess is mentioned. Russians almost have no off-the-job contact with Egyptians. He lives in an apartment house full of other Russians and spends his nonworking hours at a Russian community center playing chess.
In the Jan 24, 1969 issue of LIFE, page 61, is an article where chess is mentioned. Sean Bourke, a spy, visited Russia and found that the Russian people play chess all the time on their little miniature boards, even on the buses.
In the April 11, 1969 issue of LIFE, page 42, there is an article and photos of world chess champion Tigran Petrosian. The article, called “Close Up,” mentions that there are some 4 million Russians who play chess seriously enough to participate in chess tournaments. The article has a nice biography of Petrosian, growing up as an orphan who was a street sweeper in the middle of winter to earn some money. He used his money to buy a chess book. There is a photo of him playing Boris Spassky for the world championship in 1966.
In the May 2, 1969 issue of LIFE, page 16, there were several letters to the editors about the Tigran Petrosian article that appeared in the April 11, 1969 issue. One reader wrote, “Only three months ago Petrosian defended his doctoral thesis successfully, coming in for some high praise from Soviet academicians for his excellent research. His subject was “Some Problems of the Logic of Chess Thinking” and he tried to prove that really great players make moves more upon intuition that exact calculations!” (see my article on chess and intuition)
In the Sep 26, 1969 issue of LIFE, page 89, is an article about Lana Turner and a mention of chess. On the wall of her game room, she has the framed stills of her playing chess with Spencer Tracy in Cass Timberlane. She took up fencing which she said was physical chess.
In the Nov 28, 1969 issue of LIFE, page 33, there is an article on pro football. It mentions that All-Pro Carl Eller used to play chess with Jim Marshall, both of the Minnesota Vikings.
In the Jan 7, 1970 issue of LIFE, page 47, there is an article on Aleksandr Vishnevsky, the Soviet Union’s most famous surgeon. The article mentions that when chess champions require surgery, Vishnevsky is called for. Tigran Petrosian was mentioned as a member of the family.
In the May 15, 1970 issue of LIFE, page 21, there was an ad for Weldwood wall panels. A free chess set was given with every Weldwood paneling purchase.
In the Jun 12, 1970 issue of LIFE, there is an article on psychologist Arthur Jenson of UC, Berkeley. On page 64 there is a photo of him playing chess.
The Jan 8, 1971 issue of LIFE, page 48, mentions chess in an article about alternative schools to public schools. A school in Decatur, Illinois has no grades. A student may start his day with a game of chess.
In the Mar 26, 1971 issue of LIFE, page 56, is an article on Walter Cronkite. The article mentions that he, and his son Chip, share the same interest in chess.
In the July 23, 1971 issue of LIFE, page 61, there is an article called, “Mr. Fischer, demon of the chess world,” written by Brad Darrach. It has a photo of Fischer studying a move. The article was written after Fischer defeated Mark Taimanov by the score of 6-0 and was ahead of Bent Larsen 4-0 (Fischer eventually won with a 6-0 score).
In the Aug 13, 1971 issue of Life, page 52, there was an article on women. It mentions that the Virgin was raided to semidivine status and that in the game of chess, the pieces that was once called minister became the virgin queen, with unlimited powers.
In the Aug 27, 1971 issue of LIFE, page 50, there is a photo of a woman playing a man in a game of chess. The article is about women’s lib and women beating men at chess without guild.
The Nov 12, 1971 issue of LIFE has Bobby Fischer on the cover. The article, “Bobby Fischer is a ferocious winner,” on page 50a, was written by Brad Darrach on his observations of Fischer during his Petrosian match in Buenos Aires. There are photos of Fischer at an Argentine ranch, bowling, and studying on a pocket chess set while a passenger in a small plane.
In the Dec 3, 1971 issue of LIFE, page 23, there are some letters to the editors about Bobby Fischer. There is also a small picture of Paul Morphy.
In the Dec 10, 1971 issue of LIFE, page 97, is an article on Commander Lloyd Bucher, the skipper of the USS Pueblo, which was captured by North Korea in 1968. He said that when he returned home to San Diego, he busied himself in chess to recover.
In the Feb 18, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 73, there is a photo of world champion Boris Spassky. The article associated with the photo is called “The man who wants to keep us a world chess also-ran.” There is a good biography of Spassky and his preparation against Fischer in the article. The article mentions that one of Spassky’s seconds was Nikolai Krogius, a psychologist.
In the March 10, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 31, in a letter to the editor, Aben Rudy, responding to the Feb 18, 1972 LIFE article on Spassky, wrote that Nikolai Krogius “may be a psychologist, but to millions of chess fans he is far better known as an international grand master and a long-time friend of the current world champion. You’ll have to seek elsewhere for fantasy and science fiction.”
In the May 19, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 86, there is an article and photos of Bobby Fischer, written by Brad Darrach. The article is titled, “Chess Champion Bobby Fischer is deep in training.” It includes a photo of Fischer under water to build up his lung power, and other photos of him jumping rope, boxing, and riding an exercise bike. Fischer trained at Grossinger’s, a Catskill resort, for the world championship match with Boris Spassky in July-September, 1972.
In the July 7, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 4, there is a photo of Boris Spassky and chessboard and chess pieces on the volcanic lava field outside Reykjavik, Iceland. The title of the article is, “The Beat of Life.”
In the July 14, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 5, there is a photo of Bobby Fischer stretched out on his bed after arriving in Reykjavik for the world chess championship match with Boris Spassky.
In the July 21, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 52, is a photo of Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky from game one when Fischer to the poison pawn. The article was called “Bobby and the Black Bishop’s Last Raid.” The article shows the diagram of the Fischer’s 29th moves where black bishop taking the king rook pawn, then getting trapped when Spassky played g3.
In the July 28, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 12, there is an editorial called “Your move, Bobby.” It commented about Fischer’s antics prior to the Fischer-Spassky world championship match. At the end, it concluded, “Almost makes you wish that Boris Spassky would win.” On page 43, there are a couple of photos of Bobby Fischer. In one, he is smelling a rose on his couch. In the other photo, he is playing over the game in which he just beat Boris Spassky for the first time. The article accompanying the photos is “The Sweet Rose of Victory.”
In the Aug 11, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 41, there is a long article called “Bobby is not a nasty kid – the Fischer few people know” by Brad Darrach. Darrach saw Fischer for a year and a half and writes of his observations. There are photos (taken by Harry Benson) of Fischer with a pony, playing table tennis, visiting a tailor, and wrapped up in a blanket taking a cruise in Iceland.
In the Aug 18, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 8, there is an article called “The Bobby and Boris Show.” The article deals with the TV coverage of the Fischer-Spassky world championship match. There is a small photo of chess master Shelby Lyman making a chess move on a demonstration board.
In the Sep 1, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 61, there is an article by Brad Darrach called “If he loses, can Spassky go home again – and will he?” There is a photo of Spassky and his wife, Larisa, in their hotel suite in Iceland. Spassky gave Darrach the only interview with a Western correspondent during the match in Iceland. On page 4 and 5 are some more photos of Spassky in his hotel suite in Reykjavik
In the Sep 15, 1972 issue of LIFE, there is an article by Brad Darrach called, “Can this be Bobby Fischer?” There is a photo of Fischer showering after a dip in a public pool. The article is an interview after Fischer defeated Boris Spassky in Iceland.
In the Dec 29, 1972 issue of LIFE, page 63, is a photo of Bobby Fischer getting fitted in a three-piece suit in Reykjavik. On page 95 is a photo of Boris Spassky. The caption said he was back in the Soviet Unio, analyzing his games with Fischer, bracing for an inevitable rematch. An article on page 20, called “The Year in Television,” mentions the Fischer-Spassky match and called Fischer the greatest superstar of them all.