Chess Archaeology HomeChess is a scientific game and its literature ought to be placed on the basis of the strictest truthfulness, which is the foundation of all scientific research.W. Steinitz

Standing (from left to right): John D. Chambers, William Black, A.W. Buchan, David Forsyth, John Macfie, John Russell, James Marshall, J. Cappie, W.W. Robertson, W.H. Maslin, James Phillips, A.M. Broun, Alfred D. Vardon, James Pringle. Sitting (from left to right): George G. Gibson, George B. Fraser, Robert Brander, Daniel Y. Mills, Christopher Meikle, George M'Arthur, Georges E. Barbier.

 

They Came from Manchester and New York

 

The picture above was taken on July 16, 1887, after the conclusion of the Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association in Edinburgh. This congress commenced on July 11, 1887, and took place in the rooms of the Edinburgh Chess Club, Philosophical Institution, 4 Queen street, Edinburgh.

The program consisted of three competitions: a major tournament, a minor tournament for players who did not consider themselves strong enough, or had no time for the major tournament, and a handicap contest. Competitors in the major tournament were excluded from the minor, but participants in both the major and the minor fray were allowed to enter the handicap tournament.

Each contestant had to play one game against every other competitor, draws counting. According to the rules, the player attaining the highest aggregate score was the winner. In the event of equal scores, the Playing Committee would determine whether a tie should be played of one or more games.

Prizes in the major tournament were: first, the Champions Cup, with a value of £25, and £4 4s.; second £2 2s.; and third £1 1s. First prize in the minor tournament was £3 3s., second was £1 1s. The winner of the handicap received £3 3s. Second prize in this competition was £1 11s. 6d.

The entrance fee: to the major tourney 10s. , to the minor 5s., and to the handicap 2s. 6d. The time limit was 20 moves per hour. The use of sand glasses in the first tournament was compulsory, unless both players decided not to do so. Play commenced on the first day at 11.00 a.m. and on subsequent days at 10.00 a.m. The competitors were allowed to meet at an earlier hour if mutually agreed. "It is hoped that each player will endeavour to play at least two games per diem in the Major and Minor Tournament," wrote the organizers in the program and rules of the meeting. The games were played according to the rules of the 1883 London International Tournament.1

The liberty granted to the players in the tournament had its drawback, as Barbier pointed out in his chess column in the Glasgow Weekly Citizen of July 2, 1887:

We desire to draw the attention of the gentlemen about to take part in the Tournament to a matter of some importance. Of course, it is impossible, or all but impossible to regulate the play in this Tournament as it is in some Tournaments, where all the players start with no other business on hand than that of attending to the play. Many players in Edinburgh may not be able to play till in the hours of the afternoon or the evening. This is a drawback which is inseparable from such meetings, but the inconvenience resulting from it in making the number of games played by each competitor unequal – and sometimes very unequal at certain stages – might be minimised by all the competitors joining in making such arrangements among themselves as shall keep the players, as the play proceeds, fairly abreast of each other as to the number of games played. This inconvenience – which must not be exaggerated, but which is a real inconvenience nevertheless – may result in a position like the following: – We will suppose there are 13 competitors, which means 12 games to play for each. A has played 11 games, winning 10, losing 1. He has only Z to play. Z has played 9 games, winning 8, losing 1. He has 3 to play, one of them with A. At this stage the score indicate that the first place must fall either to A or Z. Now, both Z and A are found with "no work to do," ; as all the other competitors are engaged or absent for the time. Here, it would clearly be sheer folly for A to allow himself to be blandly counselled to play Z. Let Z bring up his number of games to A's. Why should A be advised to be a means of destroying his chance? He has played two games more than Z. Let Z play these two games, and, for all we know, his score may get so injured that the result of his game with A will be a matter of no consequence so far as the first place is concerned.  

The number of players in the major competition was not thirteen as in Barbier's example, but less. Nine men signed up to compete. The contestants were, in alphabetic order: Georges E. Barbier (from Glasgow), John D. Chambers (Glasgow), George B. Fraser (Dundee), David M. Latta (Edinburgh), James Marshall (Glasgow), Christopher Meikle (Edinburgh), Daniel Y. Mills (Manchester), Walter C. Spens (Glasgow), and James Young (Glasgow).

The number of entrants was a disappointment. The first congress in 1884 – the year that the Scottish Chess Association was founded – was attended by ten players, and at the second congress in 1885 and third in 1886 twelve contestants were present. Barbier wrote nine days before the commencement of the fourth meeting:2

THE SCOTTISH CHESS ASSOCIATION TOURNAMENT.

This important Tournament will take place this year in the rooms of the Edinburgh Chess Club, during the week beginning 11th July, and it is expected that the meeting will be largely attended and prove as successful as those of preceding years. Nothing very definite is known yet as to the probable competitors, but Glasgow is likely to be represented by Sheriff Spens, Messrs. M'Leod, Marshall, Gilchrist, Chambers, Fyfe, and Barbier. The interest of the meeting would be considerably increased if Mr. Crum, who won the cup the first year it was competed for, entered the lists, for he is a very "dour" man over the board; but the assiduous court he was wont to pay to his old love has dwindled for some time past into lukewarm and inconstant attentions. It is safe to predict that Dundee will be represented by Mr. G.B. Fraser. Messrs. Court and John Russell, of the Glasgow Central Club, both very strong players, will not be able to attend through business engagements, and this is to be regretted, as the result of no Scottish Tournament can be considered absolute when these two players are absent. Edinburgh will be represented by Dr. Rattray, if he is at home, by Messrs. Meikle and Forsyth, and possibly also by Messrs. Latta, Galloway, and J. Macfie. Mr. MacConnochie, the editor of the Northern Figaro chess column, may represent Aberdeen. Mr. Mill, who won the cup two years ago, will be one of the competitors, and should give a good account of himself, if we take into consideration the excellent score he made on that occasion, and the great form he has shown lately over the board in London and elsewhere with strong players; in fact, he is looked upon as having the best chances of the championship.

No playing schedule was fixed for the tournament. Therefore the progress is veiled in mist, with the exception that Barbier, Fraser, Meikle and Mills took an early lead, and that the competition was decided on the final day (Saturday, July 16, 1887), when Mills opposed Barbier. Mills lost his first game in the tournament, against Meikle.3 The following is known about the daily play:4

Monday, July 11, 1887: Spens – Mills 0-1; Young lost against Chambers; Latta – Barbier 0-1; Barbier won against Meikle; Meikle won against Latta, Mills and Spens.

Tuesday, July 12, 1887: Spens – Young 1-0; Chambers – Mills 0-1; Mills won against Latta; Fraser won against Barbier; Chambers – Meikle 1-0; Chambers won against Spens; Latta won against Young; Meikle won against Fraser; Young won against Marshall; Barbier – Marshall 1-0

Wednesday, July 13, 1887: Meikle – Young 1-0; Mills won against Young; Chambers Latta 1-0; Fraser won against Spens; Marshall won against Meikle.

Thursday, July 14, 1887: Chambers drew with Barbier, Fraser won against Young, Marshall won against Chambers.

Saturday, July 16, 1887: Mills – Barbier ½-½.  

Daniel Y. Mills

According to the Glasgow Weekly Citizen of July 16, 1887, Meikle, who was President of the Edinburgh Chess Club, finished four games on the first day of play. Barbier claimed that he had also contested four games on the opening day of the Third Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, which was held in Glasgow in 1886. Barbier won that tournament.

Immediately after the decisive game between Mills and Barbier the above photograph was taken.5 The results in the major competition:6

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

 

 

Mills

1

½

0

1

1

1

1

1

 6

½

Fraser

0

1

0

1

1

1

1

1

6

 

Barbier

½

0

1

½

1

1

1

1

6

 

Meikle

1

1

0

0

0

1

1

1

5

 

Chambers

0

0

½

1

0

1

1

1

4

½

Marshall

0

0

0

1

1

.

1

0

 3

 

Spens

0

0

0

0

0

.

1

1

 2

 

Latta

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

1

 

Young

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

 1

 

The game between Marshall and Spens was not played.

The players in the minor tournament were William Black (from Glasgow), Robert Brander (Lossiemouth), A.W. Buchan (Portobello), George G. Gibson (Edinburgh), John Macfie (Edinburgh), J. Mackenzie (Islay), W.H. Maslin (Alloa), Charles Matthew (Edinburgh), James Phillips (Helensburgh), W.W. Robertson (Edinburgh), George Shand (Glasgow), and Alfred D. Vardon (Edinburgh).

Black, who was Secretary of the Glasgow Chess Club, won first prize. Macfie and Robertson tied for the second prize. The tie game was won by Macfie. The final table of results:7  

 

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

 

 

Black

1

1

1

0

1

1

1

0

1

1

1

9

Macfie

0

½

0

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

8

½

Robertson

0

½

1

1

1

1

0

1

1

1

1

8

½

Phillips

0

1

0

0

0

1

1

0

1

1

1

6

 

Vardon

1

0

0

1

1

0

1

0

1

0

1

6

Mackenzie

0

0

0

1

0

½

1

0

1

1

1

5

½

Maslin

0

0

0

0

1

½

1

1

0

1

1

 5

½ 

Shand

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

1

1

1

1

5

 

Matthew

1

0

0

1

1

1

0

0

0

1

.

 5

 

10

Gibson

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

1

.

3

 

11

Buchan

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

1

2

 

12

Brander

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

.

.

0

0

 

The games between Matthew and Brander, and Gibson and Brander were not played.

The sixteen contestants in the handicap tournament were Brander (class V), Buchan (III), Chambers (I), David Forsyth (I), Fraser (I), Latta (I), Mackenzie (III), George M'Arthur (I), Matthew (III), Mills (I), Phillips (III), Robertson (III), Shand (III), Spens (I), Vardon (III), and Young (I). M'Arthur was Secretary of the Edinburgh Chess Club, and David Forsyth was Secretary and Treasurer of the Scottish Chess Association.

The first class gave to the third class the odds of pawn and two moves, and to the fifth class a rook. The pairing and results in this knock out tourney were:8

First pairing: Fraser won against Brander; Phillips won against Chambers; M'Arthur won against Young, Latta won against Forsyth after having drawn their first game; Robertson won against Mackenzie after having drawn their first game; Shand won against Vardon after having drawn their first two games; Mills won against Buchan after having drawn their first two games, Spens won against Matthew after having drawn their first two games.

Second pairing: M'Arthur won against Robertson; Spens won against Latta; Fraser won against Phillips, Mills won against Shand.

Third pairing: Fraser won against Spens; Mills won against M'Arthur.

Fourth pairing: Fraser drew with Mill, and they agreed to divide first and second prizes.

Further particulars of this meeting are missing.  

Eight games and one position of the major meeting have survived, and one game played in the handicap has been found.

Walter C. Spens - Daniel Y. Mills

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 11, 1887

  • D00 Queen's Pawn Game

1. d4 d5 2. f4 

Stonewall. 

2. ... e6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. e3 c5 5. c3 Nc6 6. Bd3 Be7 7. 0–0 0–0 8. b3 cxd4 9. exd4 Ne4 10. Ng5 f5 11. Nxe4 

Surely this is inconsiderate. That Black pawn now established at e4 will prove dangerous in the end game.

11. ... fxe4 12. Bc2 b6 13. a4 Ba6 14. Re1 Bd6 15. b4 Ne7 16. b5 Bc8 17. Rf1 

17. ... a6 

A good move, whereby he threatens to occupy a6 with his bishop again. 

18. bxa6 

Perhaps some manipulating on the queen's side would have enabled White to keep the Black bishop confined. 

18. ... Bxa6 19. Rf2 Rc8 

From now to the end Mr. Mills plays with great accuracy. The end game will repay study. 

20. g3 Nf5 21. Ba3 e3 22. Rf3 e2 23. Qd2 Nxd4 24. Re3 e1Q+ 25. Qxe1 Nxc2 

Attacking no fewer than four pieces, and Black resigns.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 23, 1887 (notes by Georges E. Barbier).  

John D. Chambers - Christopher Meikle

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 12, 1887

  • E14 Queen's Indian Defense

1. c4

Mr. Chambers played this opening throughout the tourney.

1. ... b6

The usual and better defense is 1. ... e6.

2. e3 Bb7 3. Nf3 e6 4. Be2 Nf6 5. 0–0 Be7 6. d4 0–0 7. Nc3 d5 8. b3 h6

An inferior move. Pawn to c5 would have been better.

9. Bb2 Nh7 10. cxd5 exd5 11. Rc1 c6

Pawn to c5 was still good. The move in the text gives Black a very cramped position.

12. Qc2 Nd7 13. Bd3 Ng5 14. Ne1 Bd6 15. f4 Ne6 16. Nf3 Qe7 17. Ne5 Bxe5 18. fxe5

This allows Black to free his game. 18. dxe5 would be much stronger.

18. ... f6 19. exf6 Nxf6 20. Qd2 Ng5 21. Rf5 Ng4 22. Re1 Qd6 23. Rf4 Rxf4 24. exf4 

24. ... Rf8

A miscalculation, which White very soon proves. 

25. h3 Nxh3+ 26. gxh3 Nf6 27. Re5

This costs a pawn. We see no objection in 27. Rf1

27. ... Nd7 28. Re2 Rxf4 29. Re8+ Nf8 30. Ba3 c5 31. dxc5 bxc5 32. Bc1 Rf3 33. Ne2 Rxh3 34. Nf4 Rg3+ 35. Kf2 Rg4 36. Bf5

White now winds up the game with a few powerful strokes.

36. ... Rg5 37. Be6+ Kh7 38. Qd3+ g6 39. Bh3 Bc6 40. Qa6 Nd7 41. Qxa7 Re5 42. Bxd7,

and Black resigns.

Sources: The Evening Mail (Dublin), July 28, 1887; Glasgow Weekly Herald, August 27, 1887 (notes by James Marshall?)*.

The Glasgow Weekly Herald of July 23, 1887, offered the position after White's 33th move, and wrote that Daniel Y. Mills thought that Black might have drawn after 33. ... d4.

Walter C. Spens - James Young

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 12, 1887

  • C45 Scotch Game

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Bc5 5. Be3 Nxd4

Not a good defense. The correct defense is 5. ... Qf6 6 c3 Ne7. Even game.

6. Bxd4 Bxd4 7. Qxd4 f6

Qf6 should be played here; the text move blocks the action of the Black queen.

8. Nc3 Ne7 9. 0–0–0 0–0 10. Bd3 d6 11. f4 Bg4 12. Rd2 Bh5 13. g4

A little examination of position will show that it would not have been to Black's advantage to accept the pawn. The rest of the game is interesting, and full of variation.

13. ... Bf7 14. g5 fxg5 15. Rg2 c5 16. Qg1 Kh8 17. Rxg5 Rg8 18. h4 Ng6 19. Qg4 Qe8 20. Rg1 Qc8 21. Qg3 Qf8 22. h5 Ne7 23. e5 h6 24. Rg4 dxe5 25. fxe5 Bxh5 26. Rf4 Qc8 27. Rh1 Qe8 28. Rfh4 g6 29. Qe3 Rg7 30. Rxh5 Nf5 31. Rxh6+

Resigns.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, September 3, 1887 (notes by James Marshall?)*.

The Glasgow Weekly Herald of July 23, 1887, offered the position after Black's 26th move.

John D. Chambers - Daniel Y. Mills

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 12, 1887

  • A20 English Opening

1.  c4 e5

Although this mode of defense is recommended by Mr. Rosenthal, it is seldom adopted in preference to 1. ... e6.

2. e3 Nf6 3. Nf3

Mr. Rosenthal gives the following continuation here: 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Nge2 0–0 5. a3 Bxc3 6. Nxc3 d5. Even game.

3. ... Nc6 4. d4 e4 5. Nfd2 Bb4 6. a3

6. Be2, followed by 7 0–0, would be more to our taste.

6. ... Bxd2+ 7. Nxd2 0–0 8. d5 Ne5 9. Qc2 d6 10. Nxe4 Bf5 11. Nxf6+ Qxf6 12. e4 Bd7 13. Be2

Played without sufficient consideration. A little analysis ought to have shown that the text move would block his own game. 13. f4 would preserve the pawn without any inferiority of position.

13. ... Qg6 14. g3 

14. ... f5

Black seizes the opportunity to free his game.

15. Bf4 Rae8 16. 0–0–0

The tables are turned, and White is now desperate.

16. ... fxe4 17. h4 h5 18. Qc3 Bg4 19. Bxg4 Qxg4 20. Bxe5 Rxe5 21. Qe1 Rf3 22. Rd4 Qf5 23. Rf1 e3 24. Rf4 exf2 25. Qd2 Rxf4 26. gxf4 Re4 27. b3 Rxf4 28. Qe2 Qf6

Which thoroughly settles him.

29. Qe8+ Kh7 30. Qxh5+ Qh6,

and wins.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, September 10, 1887 (notes by James Marshall?).  

Georges E. Barbier - James Marshall

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 12, 1887

  • C70 Ruy López 

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nge7 5. d4 exd4 6. Nxd4 Nxd4 7. Qxd4 b5 8. Bb3 d6 9. c4 Be6 10. 0–0 Nc6 11. Qc3 Ne5 12. f4 Nxc4 13. f5 Bd7 14. Bxc4 bxc4 15. a4 Bc6 16. Qxc4 Qd7 17. Nc3 Bb7 18. Nd5 Rc8 19. f6 Bxd5 20. exd5 gxf6 21. Rxf6 Bg7 22. Bg5 h6  

23. Bh4

His 23rd move should have been Re6+, the result of which, our readers will find after a little investigation, brings about speedy ruin to Black.

23. ... Kf8 24. Qf4 Re8 25. Rf5 Bxb2 26. Rf1 Rh7 27. Qg4 Rg7 28. Qh5 Bd4+ 29. Kh1 Be3 30. Bf6 Rg6 31. Bc3 Kg8 32. Rxf7 Qxf7 33. Rxf7 Kxf7 34. Qf5+,

and Mr. Marshall resigns.

Sources: Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 16 and 23, 1887 (notes by Georges E. Barbier)*.

The game was adjourned after White's 28th move and played out the following day.

John D. Chambers - David M. Latta

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 13, 1887

  • A28 English Opening

1.  c4 e5 2. e3 Nf6 3. Nf3 Nc6

Another usual continuation in this opening is, we believe, for both sides to play b3 and b6, Bb2 and Bb7, Be2 and Be7, and castles.

4. Nc3 Be7 5. Be2 0–0 6. d4 exd4 7. exd4 d5 8. c5 b6 9. cxb6 axb6 10. 0–0 Bd6 11. Bg5 Be7 12. Bb5 Na7 13. Bd3 Be6 14. Qc2 h6 15. Bh4 Nc6 16. a3 Bg4 17. Nb5 Bxf3 18. Qxc6 Bxg2

Giving up the bishop to gain the attack, which does not turn out well.

19. Kxg2 Nh5 20. Bg3 Bh4 21. Qxc7

Wisely refraining from exchanging bishops; as it is he considerably weakens Black's forces.

21. ... Qg5 22. Qe5 f5 23. Qxd5+ Kh8 24. Kh1 Bxg3 25. Rg1 Nf4 26. Qf3 Nxd3 27. Rxg3 Qd2 28. Qxd3 Qxb2 29. Rag1 g5 30. Rh3 Kh7 31. Rxg5 Qxf2 

32. Rg1

Things are looking very lively now.

32. ... Rg8 33. Rhg3 Rae8 34. Qb3 Rxg3

This at once gives up the game; there was little choice however.

35. Qf7+ Kh8 36. Qxe8+ Kh7 37. Qe7+ Kh8 38. Qe5+

Resigns.

Source: The Evening Mail (Dublin), July 21, 1887 (annotator is unknown).

Christopher Meikle - James Young

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 13, 1887

  • A01 Nimzowitsch-Larsen Attack  

1.  b3 e5 2. Bb2 d6 3. e3 c6 4. d4 e4 5. Nd2 d5 6. c4 a6 7. Ne2 Bg4 8. Qc2 f5 9. Nf4 Nf6 10. h3 Bh5 11. Nxh5 Nxh5 12. Be2 Nf6 13. 0–0 Bd6 14. f3 0–0 15. fxe4 fxe4 16. Rf5

There is much time lost by this move.

16. ... g6 17. Rf2 Bg3 18. Rff1 Nbd7 19. Qd1 h5 20. Nb1 Qc7 21. Na3 Kg7 22. cxd5 Nxd5 23. Qd2 N7f6 24. Bc4 b5 25. Bxd5 Nxd5 26. Nc2 a5 27. Rac1 Ne7 28. d5+ Kh7 29. dxc6 Nxc6 30. Rxf8 Rxf8 31. Nd4 Qd6 32. Qc2

He cannot take knight with rook on account of the threatened mate in two moves by Bh2+, and Rf1.

32. ... Nxd4 33. Bxd4 Qe6 34. Qe2 Qd7 35. Rf1

 

35. ... Rc8

Black could have drawn by exchanging rooks, and playing Qf5.

36. Ba1 Rg8 37. Qb2 Qd3 38. Qc1 Qd5 39. Qc3 a4 40. bxa4 bxa4 41. Qf6 Qc4 42. Qe7+ Kh6 43. Bf6 Qd5 44. h4 g5 45. Bxg5+ Rxg5 46. hxg5+

Resigns.

Source: The Evening Mail (Dublin), July 21, 1887 (annotator is unknown).

Daniel Y. Mills - Georges E. Barbier

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 16, 1887

  • C01 French Defense, Exchange Variation 

1.  e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. exd5 exd5 5. Nf3 Be7 6. Bd3 0–0 7. 0–0 Nc6 8. h3

This move is often made in this opening, preventing the pinning of the knight. In this position it seems to be loss of time.

8. ... Nb4

Black thinks he can get the better game by at once attacking the bishop. In a long game, with fair amount of pieces on either side, bishops are preferable to knights.

9. Be3 c6

Black, by this move, prepares to fight the battle on the queen's side, after doubling white's pawns.

10. Be2 Bf5

Black expected the retreat of the bishop, and, after the text move, considers he has the best of the game.

11. Rc1 Ne4 12. Bd2

A good move. Now, if 12. ... Nxc3 13. bxc3, and if Nxa2, he is lost.

12. ... a5

Black's plan is to establish good pawns on the queen's side for the end game. He believes the move to be good, but he did not follow it up properly.

13. a3 Nxc3 14. bxc3 Na6 15. Ra1

Black has slightly the better game, and the attack at the 13th move. It has been suggested that Black's play was to sacrifice two pieces for rook and two pawns, with an apparently winning position as follows: 13. a3 Nxc3 14. bxc3 Nxc2 15. Rxc2 Bxc2 16. Qxc2 Bxa3. Followed by b5.

15. ... b5 16. Ne5 Qb6 17. Bd3 Bxd3 18. Nxd3 Bd6 19. Be3 f5 20. f4 Rfe8 21. Qd2 Qc7 22. Ne5 Rac8 23. Qf2 a4

To isolate the pawn, with the chance of winning it by a combination of queen and bishop.

24. Nd3 Qe7 25. Ne5 Bxa3 26. Bc1 Bd6

At this stage Black, with common care, should have won.

27. Re1 Qb7 28. Ba3 c5 29. Nd3 b4

Here Black loses his pawn, but still with the attack in hand.

30. Rxe8+ Rxe8 31. dxc5 bxa3 32. cxd6 a2 33. d7 Qxd7 34. Rxa2 Qb5

34. ... Rb8 might have won.

35. Rb2 Qc4 36. Qd4 a3 37. Rb1 a2 38. Ra1 Qb5 39. Nb4 

39. ... Re4

A blunder which allows of a draw at once.

40. Qxd5+ Qxd5 41. Nxd5 Ra4 42. Nb4,

and the game was drawn.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 30, 1887 (notes by Georges E. Barbier).

John D. Chambers - George B. Fraser

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Edinburgh, July 1887

  • Position after Black's 28th Move  

Mr. Mills thought that here knight takes pawn gave Mr. Chambers a material if not a winning advantage, but this does not seem clear.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 23, 1887 (notes by James Marshall?).

George B. Fraser - Walter C. Spens

  • Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Handicap Tournament, Round 3

  • Edinburgh, July 1887

  • B01 Scandinavian Defense 

1.  e4 d5 2. exd5 Qxd5 3. d4 e5 4. dxe5 Qxd1+

This was not to be expected from Sheriff Spens.

5. Kxd1 Bc5 6. f4 Ne7 7. Nc3 0–0 8. Na4

White effects a satisfactory exchange by this move.

8. ... Bxg1 9. Rxg1 Rd8+ 10. Ke1 Bf5 11. c3 Bc2 12. b3 Rd1+

More alarming in appearance than reality.

13. Kf2 Nd7 

14. Nb2

Black never recovers from this powerful rejoiner.

14. ... Rd5 15. Bc4 Ra5 16. e6 Nb6 17. exf7+ Kf8 18. Be3 c5 19. Rgc1 Bg6 20. Rd1 Bxf7 21. Bxf7 Kxf7 22. Rd6

A lost move.

22. ... Nf5 23. Rd2 Nxe3 24. Kxe3 Re8+ 25. Kf3 Ke7 26. c4 Ra6 27. g4 Nd7 28. Rad1 Nb8 29. Re1+ Re6 30. Red1 a6 31. Nd3 b6 32. Ne5 Kf8 33. Rd8 Nc6 34. Rxe8+ Kxe8 35. Nxc6 Rxc6 36. h4 Ke7 37. f5 Rd6 38. Rxd6 Kxd6 39. Ke4

The extra pawn was evidently all along looked upon to carry the day.

39. ... b5 40. g5 b4 41. h5 h6 42. f6 gxf6 43. gxh6

Resigns.

Source: The Evening Mail (Dublin), July 28, 1887 (annotator is unknown).  

George H. Mackenzie

The Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association was a foregone conclusion. At least, that is what The Illustrated London News wrote afterwards (August 11, 1888), alluding to George H. Mackenzie's participation in the 1888 joust in Glasgow. Captain Mackenzie, a resident of New York but a Scotsman by birth, stopped at Glasgow on his way to Bradford, where the Fourth Congress of the British Chess Association was held almost immediately after the Scottish congress.9 His stay in Glasgow was a matter of veni vidi vici, judging from the contemporary reports that announced his attendance.

Whether Mackenzie's performance was as easy as expected, is doubtful. The Glasgow Weekly Herald (July 28, 1888):

It was not till Friday that the places were obtained. Captain Mackenzie – the winner – whose fame in the chess world naturally made him the favourite, had to work in earnest to maintain his superiority. Several of his games were earned only after hours of hard play. Mr. Mills and Mr. Chambers succeeded in making draws of their games. The former, as second player, chose the Sicilian defence, which he frequently adopts with success, although, according to latest theory, it does not give a satisfactory opening. The latter had the move, and availed himself also of his favourite opening (English – P to QB fourth) which led to the longest, and perhaps the hardest-fought, game in the tourney. Started about ten in the morning, it was still unfinished at closing time.

Just seven players signed up for the competition, which was less than in previous years. Barbier knew why the entrance fell short of expectations: "There were only seven entries for the championship. A few days before the opening of the meeting it became known that Captain Mackenzie – a Scotchman by birth, residing in America – intended to compete, and it is reasonable to suppose that the news may have had some influence on the number of entries."10

The competitors, besides Mackenzie, were: Georges E. Barbier, John D. Chambers, Peter Fyfe (from Glasgow) Edward Hunter (London), Daniel Y. Mills and Walter C. Spens. Thus, the Scottish contribution to the major tournament was restricted to Glasgow players.

The Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association commenced on July 16, 1888, in the rooms of the Glasgow Chess Club, Athenaeum, St. George's Place, Glasgow, and lasted five days. The Glasgow club had tried to secure rooms in the Exhibition Buildings in Glasgow, but this attempt was unsuccessful.11

The program—with three tournaments; a major, a minor and a handicap—was identical to that of the 1887 congress. The rules and regulations were almost the same as in 1887. A few changes were enforced. There were just two prizes in the major tournament: first prize, the cup and £4 4s.; second £2 2s. The winner in the minor tournament received £3 3s., and the second prize in this meeting was £2 2s.

A new rule (in comparison with 1887) was:

After the entries in the Major Tournament are closed, which will be at 11 a.m. on Monday the 16th July, there shall be a ballot for pairing the competitors for each day morning and evening. Competitors will be at liberty to play off their games at an earlier date than that fixed by the ballot, if it be convenient, but if not so played off the diet of play fixed by this ballot shall hold good. If a player does not attend within 15 minutes of the time fixed, a sand glass will be set running against him by his opponent.

The playing committee called attention to two rules in particular: "(1) That the King must be touched first in castling; and (2) that in the event of a player touching a square with his piece in his deliberation on the move, he is debarred from placing his piece ultimately on that square. The committee have no objections to players waiving enforcement of these two rules."12

Notwithstanding that a playing schedule existed, not much is known about the progress of the tourney. The following has been found out in reference to the daily play:13

Monday, July 16, 1888: Chambers drew with Barbier; Hunter – Mills 1-0; Mills – Spens 1-0.

Tuesday, July 17, 1888: Spens – Barbier 0-1; Chambers – Fyfe 0-1; Mills won against Fyfe; Mackenzie – Hunter 1-0; Mackenzie – Mills ½-½.

Wednesday, July 18, 1888: Mills won against Chambers; Barbier – Mackenzie 0-1.

Thursday, July 19, 1888: Barbier won against Fyfe; Mills drew with Barbier; Chambers - Mackenzie adjourned.

Friday, July 20, 1888: Mackenzie – Fyfe 1-0.

It seems that Barbier, Mackenzie and Mills quickly took the lead in the tournament. At the opening of the fourth day of play it was a pretty close race for first honors. The respective scores were: Mackenzie 3½, with two games to play (against Chambers and Fyfe); Mills 3½, with one game to play (against Barbier); and Barbier 2½, with two games to play (against Fyfe and Mills). Barbier won against Fyfe, and drew with Mills. Mackenzie opposed Chambers, but their game was adjourned. The score at the end of the day was: Barbier 4; Mills 4; Mackenzie 3½, with one game to play and one to finish.14 Mackenzie defeated Fyfe the following day, which settled the championship. Mackenzie and Chambers agreed to a draw without resuming play. 15 

Barbier and Mills divided the second prize. The final score of the major tournament:16

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

 

 

Mackenzie

1

½

1

1

1

½

5

Barbier

0

½

1

1

1

½

4

 

Mills

½

½

1

0

1

1

4

 

Fyfe

0

0

0

½

1

1

2

½

Hunter

0

0

1

½

.

.

1

½

Spens

0

0

0

0

.

1

 1

 

Chambers

½

½

0

0

.

0

1

 

Hunter retired after four games.

Nine players contested in the minor tournament, which was also less than in the preceding years. Their names were: G. Andrews (from Glasgow), Robert Brander, Timothy Bost (Glasgow), A.B. Law (Glasgow), James Mackenzie, William McCombie (Glasgow), James Phillips, H.L. Seligmann (Glasgow), and William Seligmann (Glasgow).

Andrews won first prize, Law finished second. Further particulars of this tournament are missing. The following is the final score:17  

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

 

 

Andrews

1

½

1

1

1

1

1

.

 6

½

Law

0

1

1

1

1

1

1

.

6

 

McCombie

½

0

1

1

1

½

½

.

4

½

W. Seligmann

0

0

0

1

½

1

1

1

4

½

H. Seligmann

0

0

0

0

1

1

1

1

4

Mackenzie

0

0

0

½

0

1

1

1

 3

½

Phillips

0

0

½

0

0

0

1

1

 2

½

Bost

0

0

½

0

0

0

0

.

½

Brander

.

.

.

0

0

0

0

.

0

 

Brander retired after five games.

The twenty contestants in the handicap tournament were Andrews (class II), William Black (III), Brander (class VI), Chambers (II), David Chirrey (II), John Court (II), John Crum (II), E. Duncan (IV), J.M. Finlayson (III), John Gilchrist (II), John Johnston (V), Law (III), G.H. Mackenzie (I), J. Mackenzie (IV), Marshall (II), McCombie (IV), Mills (II), Phillips (III), J. Sandeman (IV), and Spens (III).18

The first class gave the odds of pawn and move to the second class, pawn and two moves to the third class, knight to the fourth class, rook to the fifth class and two minor pieces to the sixth class. The second class gave the odds of pawn and move to the third class, and so forth.

First pairing: Mills won against G.H. Mackenzie; J. Mackenzie won against Andrews; Finlayson won against Chambers; Sandeman won against Spens; McCombie won against Gilchrist; Court won against Phillips; Law won against Black; Crum won against Johnston; Marshall won against Duncan, Chirrey won against Brander.

Second pairing: Mills won against Court; McCombie won against Finlayson; J. Mackenzie won against Crum; Chirrey won against Law; Marshall won against Sandeman.

Third pairing: McCombie won against Mills after having drawn their first game; Chirrey won against J. Mackenzie without playing because Mackenzie had to leave town; Marshall won against Sandeman.19

Fourth pairing: Marshall won against Chirrey; Marshall won against McCombie; Chirrey and McCombie agreed to divide the second prize. 

Seven games played in the major tournament have survived, and one contest in the handicap has been found. The latter was Mills' victory over Captain Mackenzie in the first round.

Andrew Hunter - Daniel Y. Mills

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 16, 1888

  • C22 Center Game

1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. Qxd4 Nc6 4. Qe3 Nf6

The more common defenses are Bg4 and g6. Lately, however, the text move has come in fashion.

5. Nc3 g6 6. Qg3 Bg7 7. Be2 Nb4

A fine move, well followed up.

8. Bd3 0–0 9. Bg5 Qe8 10. 0–0–0 Nh5 11. Qxc7 Be5 12. Qc5 Bxc3 13. bxc3 Nc6 14. g4 Ng7 15. Bf6 Qe6 16. e5 Qxg4 17. Ne2 b6 18. Qd6 Qe6 19. Be4 Ba6 20. Nf4 

20. ... Qg4

It was necessary to change queens, as the sequal shows.

21. Qd2 g5 22. Rdg1,

and Black resigns.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 21, 1888 (annotator is unknown).  

Daniel Y. Mills - Walter C. Spens

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 16, 1888

  • B01 Scandinavian Defense 

1. e4 d5

We incline to think that this defense leads to a hampered development on the part of the second player. 

2. exd5 Qxd5 3. Nc3 Qa5

This we believe is now thought better than Qe5+.

4. d4 e5 5. dxe5 Qxe5+ 6. Be2 Bg4 7. Be3 Bxe2 8. Ngxe2 Na6 9. 0–0 Rd8 10. Qe1

Black has now got into a dangerous position, from which it is difficult to emerge without disadvantage

10. ... Bc5 11. Bf4 Qe6 12. Ng3 Qxe1 13. Rfxe1+ Kf8

This is apparently the best move, but it certainly has the effect of very much cramping Black's game.

14. Rad1 Re8 15. Rxe8+ Kxe8 16. Nd5 c6 17. Nc7+ Nxc7 18. Bxc7 

Black's game is now hopelessly compromised.

18. ... g6 19. Rd8+ Ke7 20. Ne4 Nf6

This move of course loses the exchange, but has the effect of considerably disentangling Black's position.

21. Rxh8 Nxe4 22. Bg3 h5

The game was prolonged for another 20 moves, White finishing by giving up the exchange for a winning pawn ending.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, August 4, 1888 (annotator is unknown)*.

George H. Mackenzie - Andrew Hunter

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 17, 1888

  • C66 Ruy López

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. 0–0 Be7

The usual continuation is knight takes pawn.

5. Nc3 d6 6. d4 exd4 7. Nxd4 Bd7 8. Nxc6 bxc6 9. Be2

We would prefer Bd3, and if in reply Black play pawn to d5 advance king's pawn, etc.

9. ... 0–0 10. Be3 c5 11. f4 Bc6 12. Bf3 Nd7 13. Qd3 Nb6

This knight is perfectly useless here; far better would have been Re8, followed by Nf8.

14. b3 Qd7

Again a weak and useless move; Bf6 seems more to the point.

15. Rad1 Rad8 16. g4

Preventing the advance of king's bishop's pawn, and further cramping Black's game.

16. ... Qe6 17. Nd5 Bxd5 18. exd5 Qd7 19. Rd2 f5

Since White's answer is so obvious, we cannot see why this move was made.

20. Rg2 Rf7 21. Kh1 Rdf8 22. Rfg1 Bd8 23. gxf5 Bf6 24. Bf2 Qd8 25. Rg4 Nd7 26. c4 a5 27. Bd1 Re8 28. R4g2 Rfe7 29. Bh5 Rf8 30. Be3

We confess that the object in moving this bishop to and fro is a mystery to us.

30. ... Kh8 31. Rg3 Qb8 32. Rh3 Kg8 33. Bf2 Qd8 34. Bg6 

34. ... h6

If Black takes bishop, White would in reply take with pawn, threatening Rh8+ and Qh3+, and Black cannot avoid the mate.

35. Re3 Rxe3 36. Bxe3 Kh8 37. Bd2 Bd4 38. Re1 Qh4 39. Qg3 Qd8 40. Bxa5 Qa8 41. Bxc7 Qxa2 42. Bxd6 Bf2 43. Qg2 Ra8 44. Rf1

Resigns.

Sources: Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 28, 1888; Turf, Field and Farm, August 17, 1888 (notes by Eugene Delmar).

George H. Mackenzie - Daniel Y. Mills

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 17, 1888

  • B45 Sicilian Defense, Taimanov Variation

1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. Nf3 e6 4. d4 cxd4 5. Nxd4 Nf6 6. Nxc6 bxc6 7. e5 Nd5 8. Ne4 f5 9. exf6

Or 9. Nd6+ Bxd6 10. exd6 Qf6 11. f4, etc. The variation adopted by White is less complicated and preferable to the defense.

9. ... Nxf6 10. Nd6+ Bxd6 11. Qxd6 Qe7 12. Bf4 Qxd6

On the whole the exchange of queens is perhaps preferable to 12. ... Ne4, thus leaving the exchange optional to White.

13. Bxd6 Ne4 14. Ba3 d5 15. f3 Nf6 16. Bd3 Kf7 17. 0–0 Re8 18. Rae1 g6 19. f4

From the moment the queens were exchanged, the game already assumed the aspect of a draw. White is now opening an outlet for his rooks; the only possible chance for an attack.

19. ... a5 20. Rf3 Ba6 21. Bxa6 Rxa6 22. Rb3  

22. ... Rd8

The right move. If 22. ... Ra7, then 23. Bc5 Rd7 24. Rb6, and 25. Ra6, attacking the isolated rook's pawn.

23. Rb7+ Rd7 24. Rb8 Ne4 25. Re3 c5 26. g4 Raa7 27. Reb3 Rdc7 28. Rh8 Kf6 29. Kg2 g5 30. fxg5+ Kxg5 31. Rg8+ Rg7

Black had no need to exchange; but he evidently is quite satisfied with a draw; although he has a slight advantage with a strong center, knight against bishop and the latter piece out of play.

32. Rxg7+ Rxg7 33. h3 Rf7 34. Rf3

Compulsory. If 34. Rb5, then 34. ... Rf2+ 35. Kg1 Rxc2 36. Rxa5 Kf4, and wins.

34. ... Rxf3 35. Kxf3,

and the game was abandoned as drawn. Black has still the better ending; but perhaps barely enough to win against such a skillful opponent as the Captain. The result, however, is a moral victory for Mr. Mills.

Sources: Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 21, 1888; Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 21, 1888; Manchester Evening News, July 21, 1888; Bradford Observer Budget, July 28, 1888; The Field, August 4, 1888 (notes by Leopold Hoffer)*; The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, August 11, 1888; Columbia Chess Chronicle, August 18, 1888; Turf, Field and Farm, September 7, 1888.

The Columbia Chess Chronicle wrote erroneously that the game was played on July 21, 1888.  

Walter C. Spens - Georges E. Barbier

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 17, 1888

  • C01 French Defense, Exchange Variation

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6  4.exd5

Bg5 is considered stronger, affording a more lasting attack. The text move equalizes the game at once by freeing the action of Black's White bishop.

4. ... exd5 5. Bd3 Be7

The usual move is 5. ... Bd6, but the text move is good too; it prevents at some future time the awkward pinning of king's knight with bishop.

6. Nge2 0–0 7. 0–0 a6

Black meant this to be a waiting move, expecting White to play 8. f4, in which case he would also have played the text move, without the disadvantage of getting his knight pinned, as in the event of pawn takes pawn, the bishop checked, keeping the move in hand.

8. Ng3 c5

Premature and not consonant with the development of Be7 at fifth move. Besides, this move isolates the queen's pawn.

9. dxc5 Bxc5 10. Bg5 Be6 11. Nh5 Nbd7 12. Qf3 Be7

And now the bishop must come back, as White threatens to double Black's pawn and weaken his king's side.

13. Nxf6+ Nxf6 14. Rad1

A slip, evidently.

14. ... Bg4 15. Qg3 Bxd1 16. Rxd1 h6

A bad move, played without sufficient deliberation.

17. Bxh6 Ne8

Black's game is now very bad, and it is difficult to find a satisfactory defense.

18. Nxd5 Bd6 19. Bf4 Bxf4 20. Qxf4 Qd6

Black offers to exchange queens, relying on the two rooks to make up for the loss of two pawns.

21. Qe4 g6 22. Bc4 Rd8

Kg7 would have been better.

23. Ne7+ Qxe7 24. Qxe7 Rxd1+ 25. Bf1 Ng7 26. Qxb7 Re8 27. Qxa6 Ree1 28. g4 Ne6 29. Kg2 Rxf1 30. Qxf1 Nf4+ 

31. Kf3

A remarkable oversight. Black would have been satisfied with a perpetual check, as he could scarcely expect to win with a knight against the past pawns.

31. ... Rxf1

Source: Glasgow Weekly Citizen, August 11, 1888 (notes by Georges E. Barbier).

John D. Chambers - Peter Fyfe

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 17, 1888

  • A85 Dutch Defense

1. c4 f5

A form of defense favored by Bird, but mostly condemned by other masters.

2. e3 Nf6 3. Nf3 d6 4. d4 g6 5. Be2 Bg7 6. Nc3 0–0 7. 0–0 Nbd7 8. b3 e5 9. Ng5 Re8 10. d5 Nc5 11. b4 Nce4 12. Ngxe4 fxe4 13. c5 Bf5 14. Ba3 dxc5 15. bxc5 a6 16. h3 h5 17. Rb1 Rb8 18. Bc4 Kh7 19. Rb3 Bf8 20. Qe2 Qc8 21. Kh2 

21. ... g5 22. f3 Kg6 23. fxe4 Nxe4 24. Nxe4 Bxe4 25. d6 Bf5 26. Bf7+ Kxf7 27. e4 Kg6 28. Rxf5 cxd6 29. Qd2 Bh6 30. Rbf3 Re6 31. Qd5 g4 32. hxg4 hxg4 33. Rf1 Bf4+ 34. R1xf4 exf4 35. Rg5+ Kf7 36. Qf5+ Rf6 37. Qh7+ Ke6 38. Rg7 g3+ 39. Kg1 Qd8 40. Qh3+ Ke5 41. Bb2+ Kxe4 42. Qh7+ Kd5 43. Qd3+ Kc6 44. Qc4 dxc5 45. Bxf6 Qxf6 46. Qe4+ Kb5 47. Qd3+ Ka5 48. Qa3+ Kb6 49. Qb3+ Ka7 50. Rd7 Qa1+ 51. Rd1 Qe5 52. Kf1 Rh8 53. Kg1 Re8 54. Qf3 Qe1+,

and White resigned. The game is full of vicissitudes.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, November 10, 1888 (annotator is unknown).  

Georges E. Barbier - George H. Mackenzie

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Major Tournament

  • Glasgow, July 18, 1888

  • C67 Ruy López

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. 0–0 Nxe4 5. Re1

This method of treating the attack in this opening was adopted by Steinitz against Zukertort, so Mr. B. thought he could not be far wrong to follow as far as possible the example of much a successful master.

5. ... Nd6 6. Nxe5 Nxe5

Zukertort began by adopting this move, but in the latter games he moved 6. ... Be7.

7. Rxe5+ Be7 8. Bd3

Appearances are against this move, which for a time blocks the action of the queen's bishop; still it is a very strong move. An examination of the position will show that Black's game is cramped, and that White keeps grip on for a considerable time, getting later on the better development.

8. ... 0–0 9. Nc3 f5 10. Qf3 Bf6 11. Re3 g6 12. b3 Nf7 13. Bc4 c6

Inducing White to play 14. Ba3, in which case Black would have played d5.

14. Bxf7+ Rxf7 15. Ba3 d5 16. Rae1

Here White's game would be taken for choice.

16. ... Bd7 17. R3e2 Kg7 18. Nb1

Desiring to develop his center and guard against the incursion of Black's queen at a4.

18. ... b6

With the intention of shutting out the bishop, who has a commanding position.

19. Bd6 Rc8

Posting his rook in a good position for future contingencies.

20. Be5 Bxe5 21. Rxe5 Qf6 22. d4 Rc7 23. Nc3 Bc8 24. Ne2

Not good, as it develops Black's game.

24. ... f4 25. c4

Giving up a pawn for a center attack.

25. ... dxc4 26. Nc3 cxb3 27. Ne4 Qd8 28. axb3 h6 29. Qc3

A strong position for queen.

29. ... Bf5 30. f3 

30. ... Kh7

Evidently a slip, as by his next move White obtains a strong attack, which in better hands should have been successful.

31. Re8 Qd5

Of course, if he had taken rook he would have lost her majesty and the game at once.

32. Re5 Qd7 33. Re8 Bxe4 34. R1xe4 Qd5 35. R4e5 Qd6 36. R5e6 Qd5 37. Re5 Qd7 38. d5

We are not prepared to say that this move loses the game, but White might have kept his strong center position and drawn.

38. ... cxd5 39. Qd4 Rc8 40. Rxc8

He might have won the queen for two rooks, by R5e7, but lost in the ending.

40. ... Qxc8 41. Qxd5

Pawn to h3 would have been best, as the pawn is bound to fall. With this move we believe the game drawn now.

41. ... Rd7,

and the game was continued for some 20 moves, and won by Black. White here moved queen to b5, but Black managed to exchange both pieces, winning by his extra strength on queen's side.

Sources: Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 21, 1888 (notes by Georges E. Barbier); Leeds Mercury, July 28, 1888; Columbia Chess Chronicle, September 22, 1888.   

Daniel Y. Mills - George H. Mackenzie

  • Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, Handicap Tournament, Round 1

  • Glasgow, July 17, 1888

  • Odds of Pawn and Move 

1. e4 Nc6 2. d4 e5 3. d5 Nce7 4. Nf3 Ng6 5. h4 d6 6. h5 N6e7 7. Bg5 Nf6 8. Nc3 Bg4 9. h6 Ng6 10. hxg7 Bxg7 11. Qd3 a6 12. Nh4 Qe7 13. f3 Bd7 14. g4 Nxh4 15. Bxh4 Qf7 16. Ne2 h6 17. Ng3 0–0–0 18. 0–0–0 c5 19. dxc6 Bxc6 20. Qc3 Kb8 21. Bc4 d5 22. Bb3 Qc7 23. Bxf6 Bxf6 24. exd5 Bg5+ 25. Kb1 Bb5 26. Qxc7+ Kxc7 27. c4 Be8 28. Bc2 Bf7 29. Ne4 Be7 30. Rh2 b5 31. cxb5 axb5 32. Bb3 Bg6 33. Rc2+ Kb7 34. Rc6 Bxe4+ 35. fxe4 

35. ... Bg5 36. a4 bxa4 37. Bxa4 Rhf8 38. Rd3 Rf1+ 39. Ka2 Ka7 40. Rg6 Rf4 41. Rg7+

Black resigns.

Source: Manchester Evening News, August 4, 1888.  

Captain Mackenzie engaged fifteen members of the Scottish Chess Association in simultaneous play on July 20, 1888. The exhibition started at 7.00 p.m. and finished shortly after 10.00 p.m. He won ten games, drew three, and lost two. The full list: Mackenzie - M'Arthur ½-½; Mackenzie - Forsyth 1-0; Mackenzie - Robertson (from Edinburgh) 1-0; Mackenzie - Pagan 1-0; Mackenzie - Brander 1-0; Mackenzie - Gilchrist 1-0; Mackenzie - Russell 0-1; Mackenzie - McCombie 1-0; Mackenzie - Marshall ½-½; Mackenzie - Seligmann 1-0; Mackenzie - Finlayson 1-0; Mackenzie - Black ½-½; Mackenzie - Robertson (from Glasgow) 1-0; Mackenzie - Court 0-1; Mackenzie - Bost 1-0.20

The following afternoon Mackenzie gave a second performance of simultaneous play at the Glasgow Chess Club. This time nine opponents put their luck to the test. The Captain won six games, drew one and lost two. The individual results on this occassion were: Mackenzie - Veitch 1-0; Mackenzie - Sandeman 1-0; Mackenzie - Buchanan 1-0; Mackenzie - Pirrie ½-½; Mackenzie - Finlayson 1-0; Mackenzie - Chirrey 0-1; Mackenzie - Law 1-0; Mackenzie - Marshall 0-1; Mackenzie - Kinghorn 1-0.21

Below are three games and one position of these exhibitions. 

George H. Mackenzie - David Forsyth

  • Glasgow Chess Club, Simultaneous Exhibition

  • Glasgow, July 20, 1888

  • C22 Center Game

1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. Qxd4 Nc6 4. Qe3 Bb4+

This is one of the best defenses. Another good defense is 4. ... g6.

5. c3 Ba5 6. Qg3 Qf6 7. Nf3 g6 8. Bg5 Qg7 9. Bc4 d6 10. 0–0 Nge7

This error loses Black two moves. The Captain's correct reply shows that Black had nothing better than to retire the knight home again.

11. Qh4 Ng8 12. Nbd2 Be6 13. b4

White very early commences a bold attack, the soundness of which is doubtful; for, as the game went, Black might have at least secured a draw.

13. ... Bb6 14. a4 Qxc3

Black is prepared to give a piece for several pawns.

15. Bxe6 fxe6 16. a5 Bd4 17. Rac1 Qxb4 18. a6

This is much superior to Rc4, in reply to which Back would have played Bxf2+, getting four pawns for his bishop.

18. ... Kd7 19. axb7 Qxb7 20. Rxc6 Bxf2+ 21. Rxf2 Qxc6

Black is now the superior in force, though White's position is very attacking.

22. Nd4 Qb6  

23. Nxe6

A very pretty move. Black's taking the knight would be fatal.

23. ... Re8 24. Nc4 Qb1+ 25. Rf1 Qb3 26. Rf7+ Kxe6 27. Rxc7 Qd1+ 28. Kf2 Qh5

Here Black loses the game. Rf8 would have forced a draw, as a subsequent examination of the position with the Captain showed.

29. Qf4

Resigns.

Sources: Glasgow Weekly Herald, September 29, 1888 (annotator is unknown)*; The Chess Player's Chronicle, November 28, 1888; Columbia Chess Chronicle, January 3, 1889.

George H. Mackenzie - J. Court

  • Glasgow Chess Club, Simultaneous Exhibition

  • Glasgow, July 20, 1888

  • C25 Vienna Game

1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 exf4 4. Nf3 g5 5. d4 g4 6. Bxf4 gxf3 7. d5 f2+ 8. Kxf2 Qf6 9. g3 Ne5 10. Kg2 d6 11. Nb5 Kd8 12. Be2 Qg6 13. Bf3 Nxf3 14. Qxf3 a6 15. Nd4 Bg4

Mr. Court has now got as good a position as his formidable antagonist, with the advantage of the piece sacrificed by White for attack.

16. Qd3 Nf6 17. Rhe1 Nh5

Mr. Court defends strongly by counter-attack.

18. Bd2 Rg8 19. c4 Bd7 20. b4 Bh6

Mr. Courts play is vigorous as well as careful and accurate.

21. Re2 Bxd2 

22. Qxd2

The bishop can, of course, only be recaptured by the queen; otherwise Nf4+; but the effect is to permit the decisive attack of Black.

22. ... Nxg3 23. hxg3 Qxg3+ 24. Kh1 Qh4+ 25. Rh2 Qxe4+ 26. Rg2 Bh3 27. Rag1 Rxg2 28. Rxg2 Kd7 29. Qg5 Bxg2+ 30. Qxg2 Qxd4 31. Qh3+ Ke7,

and White resigns.

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, August 4, 1888 (annotator is unknown).

George H. Mackenzie - Robert Pirrie

  • Glasgow Chess Club, Simultaneous Exhibition

  • Glasgow, July 21, 1888

  • C02 French Defense, Advance Variation

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. e5

Not, we think, so good as the usual continuation of exd5 or Nc3.

3. ... c5 4. c3 Nc6 5. Nf3 Bd7 6. Bd3 f6

A doubtful move; it seems to us rather to expose the Black king.

7. 0–0 Qb6 8. dxc5 Bxc5 9. b4 Be7 10. Re1 0–0–0

Black, however, castles on the queen's side, and perhaps this was in contemplation when the sixth move was made. Frequently castling on the queen's side early in the game is of doubtful propriety, as this side is more open to attack than that of the king.

11. a4

And White at once pushes on to the attack.

11. ... fxe5 12. b5 e4

The situation becomes lively and interesting.

13. bxc6 Bxc6 14. Nd4 exd3 15. Rxe6 Bc5 16. Qxd3 Nf6 17. Bf4 Qb2 18. Ra2

A fine, but apparently unsound combination, which, doubtless, Captain Mackenzie would not have gone in for in any match game, but in playing a number of simultaneous games with presumably weaker antagonists a strong player takes the risk of eventualities whenever he sees an opening for a powerful attack. We give a diagram of the position at this point.

18. ... Qxa2 19. Rxc6+ bxc6 20. Qa6+ Kd7 21. Qxc6+ Ke7 22. Qxc5+ Kf7 23. Nd2 Rhe8 24. h3 Qxa4 25. N2f3 Ne4 26. Qc7+ Qd7 27. Ne5+ Rxe5 28. Qxe5 Nxc3 29. Nf5 Ne2+ 30. Kh1 Nxf4 31. Qxf4 Kg8 32. g4 d4 33. h4 d3 34. Qd2 a5 35. h5 a4 36. h6 g6 37. Ne3 a3 38. Qa2+ Qf7 39. Qxa3 

39. ... Qxf2

Black has played very well, but here he gives his powerful adversary a chance of which he at once avails himself. At this point it would have seem as if d2 would have won. Captain Mackenzie's object, of course, was to secure a draw by perpetual check.

40. Qe7 Qf8 41. Qe6+ Qf7 42. Qb6 Rd7 43. Qb8+ Qf8 44. Qb3+ Qf7,

and the game was abandoned as drawn.

Sources: Glasgow Weekly Herald, September 22, 1888 (annotator is unknown); The Chess Player's Chronicle, November 7, 1888.

George H. Mackenzie - J. Sandeman

  • Glasgow Chess Club, Simultaneous Exhibition

  • Glasgow, July 21, 1888

  • Final Position 

White had just played Rxh7+, which forced the game. 

Source: Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 28, 1888

Mackenzie visited Edinburgh before he left Scotland for Bradford.

Back to the main picture of this article. The photo was taken by Marshall Wane, Edinburgh.

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* The diagram was given in the original source.

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Notes:   1 The Glasgow Weekly Herald of July 2, 1887, published the program and rules of the Fourth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association.   2 Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 2, 1887.   3 The Morning Post, August 1, 1887.   4 The list is based on (daily) reports in the Edinburgh Evening News, the Glasgow Herald, the Glasgow Weekly Citizen, and the Glasgow Weekly Herald.   5 Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 23, 1887.   6 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 23, 1887; Nottinghamshire Guardian, July 30, 1887; The Chess Monthly, August 1887, page 361; The British Chess Magazine, August-September 1887, page 344; The International Chess Magazine, September 1887, page 262.   7 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 23, 1887; The British Chess Magazine, August-September 1887, page 344.   8 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 23, 1887; The British Chess Magazine, August-September 1887, pages 344-345. The reports in the Glasgow Weekly Herald and The British Chess Magazine are conflicting. According to The British Chess Magazine, Young against M'Arthur was the only game which was decided after the first confrontation had been drawn, and Robertson against Mackenzie was the onlycontest which was decided after the first two games had been drawn.   9 The Bradford international tournament took place from August 6 till August 18, 1888.   10 Glasgow Weekly Citizen, July 21, 1888.   11 Glasgow Weekly Herald, June 2, 1888.   12 The Glasgow Weekly Herald of July 14, 1888, published the program and rules of the Fifth Congress of the Scottish Chess Association.   13 The list is based on (daily) reports in the Edinburgh Evening News, the Glasgow Herald, the Glasgow Weekly Citizen and the Glasgow Weekly Herald.   14 Glasgow Herald, July 20, 1888.   15 Glasgow Herald, July 20, 1888.   16 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 28, 1888; Manchester Evening News, July 28, 1888; The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, August 4, 1888; The British Chess Magazine, August-September 1888, page 356; The Chess Monthly, September 1888, page 11; The International Chess Magazine, September 1888, page 266.   17 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 28, 1888; The British Chess Magazine, August-September 1888, page 357; The Chess Monthly, September 1888, page 12.   18 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 28, 1888; The British Chess Magazine, August-September 1888, page 358; The Chess Monthly, September 1888, page 12.   19 All sources (Glasgow Weekly Herald, The British Chess Magazine, and The Chess Monthly) claimed that Marshall won against Sandeman in the second and third round.    20 Glasgow Herald, July 21, 1888.   21 Glasgow Weekly Herald, July 28, 1888. The Glasgow Weekly Citizen (July 28, 1888) claimed that Mackenzie played against ten opponents. The British Chess Magazine (August-September 1888, page 359) and The Chess Monthly (September 1888, page 13) offered eight antagonists, and claimed that the exhibition took place on July 22, 1888.

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Pictures: Edinburgh 1887 (The Illustrated London News, August 6, 1887); Daniel Y. Mills (The Chess Monthly, October 1890); George H. Mackenzie (Illustrirte Zeitung, October 6, 1883)

 © August 2015 Joost van Winsen. All Rights Reserved


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