Archive for the 'Historic Moments' Category

Reflections on the 1989 U.S. Open The year of 1989 was an interesting year for Black chess. Maurice Ashley and Emory Tate had begun to get the recognition they had long deserved and had continued to prove themselves. Both starred at the 1988 New York Open earning IM norms. In May 1989, the math genius […]

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Oftentimes we see chess players at tournaments and do not realize who they are or what kind of life they lead in the “outer world.” Many of us have sat across from very powerful individuals and may not have known. George Leighton is one of these individuals. Born in New Bedford, Massachusetts on October 12, […]

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Lapshun and Parrilla play a game against a picturesque backdrop. Bronx native, Medina Parrilla journeyed to Halkidiki, Greece to compete in the Under-12 championships and scored a respectable 6-5. The Bronx Times’ Noah Fowle penned an article about the 12-year old star and although she downplayed the attention she has been getting, the trip to […]

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Plotting moves, the “Bad Bishops” are closely watched by their coach, Jeffrey Chesin (at end of table). Kevin Giles and Michael Allen play a game of blitz (center). At this point, Vaux had won five consecutive national titles. Photo courtesy of Johnson Publishing Company. Roberts Vaux Middle School has a long history of chess prowess. […]

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U.S. Chess Life magazine, January 1985 Air Force Sergeant Emory A. Tate, Jr., stationed at Ft. Meade, Maryland accepts the first annual Haskell Small Award for taking individual honors at the 25th Annual Armed Forces Chess Championship Tournament Tate won the tournament, which was held in Washington, D.C. from September 11-20 (1984), with a score […]

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“Algers–Negres jouant aux Echecs” The undated postcard is loosely translated “Algers-Blacks playing chess.” Of course, in French “échecs” does not necessarily refer to “chess,” but could refer to other board games such a warri, ayò, or draughts. Pictured are four men playing what looks like a precursor to contemporary chess. However, the board men appear […]

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Atlanta, Georgia (USA) Clockwise: Frank Johnson at one of his many study sessions with Shredder. A blitz session between a determined Issac Hinch (L) and a trash-talkin’ Donald Jackson (R) draws an audience of FM Stephen Muhammad and Sulaiman Smith (standing). Smith and Muhammad set battle into motion with a 3-minute match of their own. […]

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Cuba’s Native Son Rogelio Ortega The island of Cuba has a great many traditions. With its distinct blend of Spanish and African heritage, Cuba bustles with energy and its citizens are friendly, easy-going and very passionate. One passion that pervades the Cuban society is chess. The birthplace of former World Champion José Raúl Capablanca, chess […]

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Following are pictures from the historic 2001 World Open. This tournament featured a contingent of African players touring the U.S. The usual excitement filled the air as many of the Black players scored impressive results. To see a larger view of thumbnails, click on image. The colored photographs were taken by Daaim Shabazz and the […]

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Maurice Ashley – William MorrisonBlack Bear Challenge The Black Bear Chess School is a chess club having produced some of the strongest Black chess Masters in its history. In the famous Black Bear tradition, players jockeyed for position in the club. In order to move up, one player had to challenge the player immediately above […]

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