Chess Room Newsletter #670 | Mechanics' Institute

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Chess Room Newsletter #670

Gens Una Sumus!

Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club Newsletter #670
June 6, 2014

Take reasonable decisions, respect chess players and chess traditions, and please don’t make changes just to initiate activity.

—Boris Gelfand, offering his advice to FIDE
and the Israeli Chess Federation,
as given in Chess, May 2013, page 7

 The 51st Arthur Stamer Memorial will be held Saturday June 7 and Sunday June 8. 

1) Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News

The Summer Tuesday Night Marathon, headed by International Master Elliott Winslow, FIDE Masters Andy Lee and Frank Thornally, and National Masters Hayk Manvelyan, Natalya Tsodikova, Romy Fuentes and Keith Vickers, has 79 entries so far.

The first round often goes completely by the form charts, as the top half plays the bottom but this time was different as Jamyandagva Zulkhuu (832) beat a 1723 and Charles James, Robert Reyes and Renate Otterbach all drew with players rated over 500 points above them.

Go to to see the games from round one.

From round 2 of the SummerTNM Tuesday Night Marathon:
Black to move (Newey–Uzzaman after 20 Nb3)White to move (Ochoa–MacIntyre after 21...Kh8)
White to move (Raghavan–Potharam after 24...Qd7)Black to move (Olson–Handler after 24 Bxf3)
White to move (Eytan–Riese after 34...Kxf5)White to move (Hood–Robertson after 18...Nh5)
For the solutions, see game scores for round 2.

Grandmaster Sam Shankland of Orinda, who tied for fourth place in the recent US Championship, will be giving a lecture at the Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club on Tuesday, June 10 from 5:15 to 6:15 pm. This event is free and open to all.

Book and equipment donations to the Mechanics’ are always welcome. All donations to the Mechanics’ are tax deductible, due to the M.I.’s 501(c) (3) nonprofit status. If you have any chess books or equipment that have been lying around unused for some time consider donating to the Mechanics’. You will not only get a tax write-off, but also the satisfaction of seeing things put to good use.

2) San Francisco GM Invitational 2014

Bay Area chess players will have the opportunity to watch Grandmasters in action very soon. June 6 to 8 an 8-player rapid (G/25) round robin will be held at the San Francisco Marriott Fisherman’s Wharf, located at 1250 Columbus Avenue. The field will be a mixture of US and foreign players, with the common link that most of them were born in the Ukraine.

Among those participating are US Women’s Champion Irina Krush, several-time US Champion Lev Alburt, long-time Armenian team coach Arshak Petrosian and noted theoretician Evgeny Sveshnikov. The field is rounded out by GMs Adrian Mikhalchisin, Gennady Zaichik, Mikhail Gurevich and International Master Masha Klinova.

The playing schedule is as follows:

Friday – June 6
Round 1 – 10am, Round 2 - noon

Saturday – June 7
Round 3 – 10am, Round 4 – 11:30 am and Round 5 – 1pm

Sunday – June 8
Round 6 – 10am and Round 7 – 11:30am
Tiebreak 2pm

Monday – June 9
Blitz tournament 10am

Call (415) 775-7555 for more information.

3) Nancy RoosUS Women’s Champion and Chess Photographer

The Mechanics’ Institute has been at 57 Post Street for over 100 years, time to acquire a lot of history. The tables in the Chess Room date back to 1913 and some of the photos on the walls to 1909. Many of those in the smaller room (#407), which is used for classes, skittles and analysis, were taken by Nancy Roos (1905-1957).

A professional photographer, Roos was born in Germany and moved to the United States in the late 1930s. She relocated to Southern California after World War II, and her photographs appeared regularly in the Chess Review, Chess Life and the California Chess Reporter.

Roos was not only a great photographer, she was also tied for first in the US Women’s Championship in 1955 with Gisela Gresser. On the occasion of her victory Willa White Owens wrote about her in Chess Life and gives us some insight into what Roos was like.

Mrs. Nancy Roos of Los Angeles, California, is the fifth women to have or to share the title of U.S. Women’s Chess Champion, which title she now shares with Mrs. Gisela Gresser of New York.  Others who have had the title are Miss Mona Mae Karff, Mrs. Mary Bain, and Mrs. Adele Belcher (formerly Mrs. Rivera).

Mrs. Roos’ free and easy style of play seems not to have been affected in this tournament by the fact that she had not fully recovered from an automobile accident last July and was frequently in actual pain.  Her lifelong interest in the arts and in people coupled with a sound sense of values in matters ethical and aesthetic, make her a delightful conversationalist.  One felt privileged to be in her company.

4) Tournament Crosstables

The late Jeremy Gaige was a pioneer when it came to preserving chess history and his monumental multi-volume work on tournament crosstables is of the highest standard. More recently Gino Di Felice has updated this in a twelve-volume (and still growing) series published by McFarland. Now add Eduardo Bauzá Mercere to this list of important archivists.

He submits the following crosstable of an event played at Rye Beach near the New York/Connecticut border. The winner, Abe Kupchik, was recently inducted into the US Chess Hall of Fame.

Rye Beach - 22-28 July 1918

 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1. Kupchik, Abraham * 1 = 1 1 1 1 1 1 7½ 2. Chajes, Oscar 0 * 1 1 1 1 1 = 1 6½ 3. Bernstein, Jacob = 0 * 1 0 = 1 1 1 5 4. Black, Roy Turnbull 0 0 0 * 1 1 1 1 1 5 5. Jaffe, Charles 0 0 1 0 * 1 1 1 1 5 6. Borochow, Harry 0 0 = 0 0 * 1 = 1 3 7. Daly, Harlow Bussey 0 0 0 0 0 0 * 1 1 2 8. McCudden, John Lester 0 = 0 0 0 = 0 * = 1½ 9. Ring, Henry 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 = * 0½10. Zirn, Harry 0 - - - - - - - -

Zirn withdrew after the first round, and his place was taken by Ring.

Brooklyn chess player and organizer Harry Zirn was the grandfather of the late Jim Buff of San Francisco, a lifelong friend of Bobby Fischer.

Source: American Chess Bulletin, 9-10/1918, p. 176 and the Brooklyn Eagle, 25 JUL 19018, p. 2.

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