Chess in 1847

by Bill Wall


In 1847, Fernando Saavedra was born in Seville, Spain.  He discovered the Saavedra move.


In 1847, General Romulo Diaz de la Vega was captured during the Mexican-American war and spent his time in the Castle of San Juan de Ulua prison playing chess.  (source: Eastern Carolina Republican, May 26, 1847).  He later became the 23rd President of Mexico, but his government lasted only 22 days.


In 1847, Staunton first played the Staunton Gambit, against Horwitz.


In 1847, the Philadelphia Chess Club beat the Boston Chess Club in a correspondence match with one win and one draw.


In 1847, the Dundee Chess Club was founded.


In 1847, Carl Mayet defeated Von der Goltz and Wilhelm Hanstein defeated Carl Mayet in chess matches in Berlin.


In 1847, Henry Buckle defeated Henry Bird in a match in London.


In 1847, Simpson's, room at 101 The Stroud, London, famous for chess, was founded.


In 1847, several women’s' chess clubs were formed in the Netherlands.


In 1847, Stanley challenged any player except Staunton to a match.


In February 1847, the Hermes Chess Club was formed at Oxford University.


In May 1847, Anton Schmid wrote Tschaturangavidja: Literatur des Schachspiels, published in Vienna.


On June 19, 1847, Nathanael Bland (1803-1865) read "On the Persian Game of Chess," published by the Royal Asiatic Society (1852).  He said that chess was invented in Persia.


In July 1847, the Chess Player’s Handbook by Staunton was published in Bohn's Scientific Library series.


In July 1847, Eugene Delacroix (1798-1863) painted “Arabes jouant aux echecs” (Arabs playing chess).  According to Delacroix’s journal, he worked on this painting in July 1847 while staying at his small house in Champrosay, just outside Paris. Delacroix had visited North Africa in 1832, and the scenes that this trip had exposed him to were to have a lasting influence on his work.  The painting hangs in the National Gallery in Edinburgh, Scotland. Delacroix visited North Africa in 1832 and he remembered the scene of Arabs playing chess in the streets. Delacroix said he used “baby’s eyelashes” to paint “Arabs Playing Chess.”


In September 1847, the last issue of American Chess Magazine by Stanley appeared.


On October 27, 1847, Alexandre Louis Lebreton Deschapelles died of hydropsy in Paris at the age of 68.  He was born at Ville d’Avray, near Versailles on March 7, 1780.  He had a lingering illness of 20 months and was confined to bed.  He was a gifted French player and French soldier.  He was unofficial world chess champion from 1800 to 1820.


In October 1847, a match was played between the Trinity Cambridge Chess Club and the Hermes Chess Club at Oxford.  Cambridge won.


In December 1847, Mr. Ries completed his “chess saloon,” the largest, most costly, and best appointed chess establishment in Europe.  It was located at the Divan in the Strand, London.


In December 1847, the last issue of the second series of Le Palamede monthly chess magazine appeared.  The first series was founded in 1836 and ended in 1839.  The second series was started in 1842.


On December 25, 1847, Walter Shinkman was born in Bohemia.  He was called “The Wizard of Grand Rapids.”