Yorkshire Chess History

 

Contents:

1851: Sheffield Athenaeum & Mechs’ Inst. v Birmingham Polytechnic Corres. Match

Home

Narrative

Organisations

Events

Games

People

Graves

Buildings

Competitions

Trophies

Made in Yorkshire

Miscellaneous

 

Sheffield Sub-Site

 

 

In late 1850, Birmingham Polytechnic Chess Club issued a challenge to the Sheffield Athenaeum & Mechanics Institute, to play two simultaneous games of chess by correspondence.  This challenge was accepted by the SA&MI committee, and play commenced on 02/01/1851.

 

In the initial stages George Bailey Cocking, secretary of the Sheffield Athenaeum & Mechanics’ Institution, reported progress in the Sheffield & Rotherham Independent, in the issues of 01/02/1851, 12/04/1851 and 17/05/1851.  At that juncture Sheffield’s position as White was going very badly wrong; the next report would have been highly embarrassing, and further reports appear not to have been issued at the Sheffield end until honour had been reclaimed by victory in the other game!

 

In the game in which they had White, Sheffield would in an over-the-board game have resigned by move 26, but as the other game was still in progress the Sheffield team played out a totally lost game which finally ended when the Birmingham team delivered checkmate on move 48.  The other game lasted somewhat longer, and Birmingham similarly played out a lost (though not so excruciatingly bad) ending, until Sheffield delivered checkmate on move 60.  The match as such was thus drawn.

 

The full scores of both games were reported by George Bailey Cocking in the Sheffield & Rotherham Independent of 29/11/1851 (given here in modern algebraic notation rather than the English descriptive notation in use at the time):

 

Game 1:

White: Sheffield Athenaeum & Mechanics’ Institute,

Black: Birmingham Polytechnic

1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. Qxd4 Nc6 4. Qd1 Bc5 5. Nf3 d6 6. Bc4 Qf6 7. Nc3 Nge7 8. h3 Ne5 9. Nd5 Nxd5 10. Bxd5 c6 11. Bb3 Qg6 12. O-O (Sheffield’s thinking here is difficult to discern) Bxh3 13. Ng5 Be6 14. c3 h6 15. Nxe6 fxe6 16. Bf4 Ng4 17. Bc2 O-O 18. Qd2 e5 19. Bg3 Ne3 20. fxe3 Qxg3 21. Rae1 Rxf1+ 22. Kxf1 Rf8+ 23. Kg1 Rf3 24. Bd3 Rxe3 25. Bc4+ Kh8 26. Rxe3 Bxe3+ 27. Qxe3 Qxe3+ 28. Kh2 Qxe4 29. Be6 Qh4+ 30. Kg1 e4 31. b3 d5 32. Bf5 Qf4 33. Bg6 e3 34. Bd3 Qf2+ 35. Kh2 e2 36. Bxe2 Qxe2 37. a4 g5 38. c4 g4 39. cxd5 cxd5 40. b4 h5 41. Kg3 Kh7 42. b5 Kh6 43. Kf4 Qe4+ 44. Kg3 Kg5 45. Kf2 h4 46. a5 g3+ 47. Kf1 Qe3 48. a6 Qf2 mate, 0-1

 

Game 2:

White: Birmingham Polytechnic,

Black: Sheffield Athenaeum & Mechanics’ Institute

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 d5 4. exd5 exd5 5. c4 Nf6 6. Nc3 Be6 7. Be3 Nc6 8. cxd5 Nxd5 9. Bb5 Qb6 10. O-O O-O-O 11. Qe2 Nxd4 12. Bxd4 cxd4 13. Na4 Qd6 14. Nxd4 Nf4 15. Qc2+ Kb8 16. Rfd1 Bd5 17. Bf1 Qf6 18. Rac1 Bd6 19. g3 Be5 20. Qf5 Bxd4 21. Qxf4+ Qxf4 22. gxf4 Bxa2 23. Rd2 f5 24. Bg2 h5 25. h3 h4 26. b4 Be6 27. Re1 Rhe8 28. Bf3 g6 29. Nc5 Bxc5 30. Rxd8+ Rxd8 31. bxc5 Rd3 32. Re3 Rxe3 33. fxe3 Bd7 34. Kf2 Bc6 35. Be2 Kc7 36. Bc4 Be8 37. Bd5 b5 38. cxb6 ep+ Kxb6 39. Ke2 Kc5 40. Ba2 Kb4 41. Kd2 Ka3 42. Bd5 Kb2 43. e4 fxe4 44. Bxe4 a5 45. f5 gxf5 46. Bxf5 a4 47. Be6 a3 48. Ke3 Ba4 49. Kf4 Bb3 50. Bxb3 Kxb3 51. Kg4 a2 52. Kxh4 a1=Q 53. Kg5 Qh8 54. h4 Kc4 55. h5 Kd5 56. h6 Ke5 57. Kg6 Qf6+ 58. Kh7 Kf5 59. Kg8 Kg6 60. h7 Qg7 mate, 0-1

 

Created

31/08/2014

Stephen John Mann

Last Updated

31/08/2014