by Bill Wall


Chess has been played in Canada since the early 18th century.


In 1759, General Sir John Hale and General Wolfe played chess on their way over to the taking of Quebec.

In 1787, there was a chess club in Nova Scotia. Its president was Richard Bulkeley.

By the 1840s, there were chess clubs in Quebec and Kingston, Ontario.

In 1844, the Montreal Chess Club was formed. It s founding member was Thomas Workman (1813-1889).

In 1846, the Toronto Chess Club was formed.

In 1872, the Chess Federation of Canada (CFC) was founded. At the time, it was called the Canadian Chess Association (CCA). Its first president was J.B. Cherriman. Around that time, the first Canadian chess book was published.

In 1873, Albert Ensor won the first completed Canadian championship.

In 1873-74, Henry Robertson won the first Canadian correspondence tournament.

In 1874, John Henderson won the Canadian championship.

In 1921, the Canadian Correspondence Chess Association was founded.

In 1924, Canada became a founding member of the Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE)

In 1932, the CCA was transformed into the Canadian Chess Federation (CCF), which was renamed the Chess Federation of Canada (CFC) in 1945 to avoid confusion with the CCF political party.

In 1936, Daniel Abraham (Abe) Yanofsky (1925-2000) won the Canadian Senior Boys Championship and the Canadian Major Open Championship.

In 1937, Abe Yanofsky won the Manitoba Championship and played in his first Canadian championship.

In 1941, Abe Yanofsky, age 16, won his first Canadian championship. He would win a record eight times (1941, 1943, 1945, 1947, 1953, 1959, 1963, and 1965). He won the Canadian championship twice with a perfect score of 11 out of 11 in 1943 and 1959.

In 1967, Lawrence Day represented Canada at the World Junior Championship.

In 1968, Lawrence Day first played on the Canadian team at the World Chess Olympiad. He would represent Canada in 13 chess Olymiads (1968, 1972, 1974, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1992, 1994, 1996, and 1998).

In 1978, Canada had their best finish in a chess Olympiad when they tied for 7th place at the chess Olympiad held in Buenos Aires.

In 1986, Abe Yanofsky played in his last Canadian championship a span of 49 years (1937 to 1986).

In 2008, Alexander Ugge of Canada won a Silver medal in the 21st World Correspondence Championship final, 2005-8. He was 68 when the tournament began and is the oldest person in the history of chess to win a medal in a World Championship.

The 2011 Canadian Chess Open saw a three-way tie between Walter Arencibia, Joel Benjamin, and Dejan Bojkov.

The Canadian chess champions for 2011 were Eric Hansen and Bator Sambuev.

The Canadian chess champion for 2012 was Bator Sambuev.