Multi-gamers in history

General Discussion about the game of Checkers.

Multi-gamers in history

Postby Pedro Saavedra on Thu Jan 24, 2008 10:52 am

This is an offshoot of the Bobby Fischer discussion, but really a separate topic. One person mention that Fischer was interested in checkers, but never played it competitively. When thinking of players that excelled at both games the one name that comes to mind is Newell Banks. Have there been other players that excelled at both games?

I know a number that have excelled at one and been competitive at the other or been strong players in both. Ed Scheidt was playing some tournament chess when I met him (he asked to play me a game, and I was careless and he beat me, but his rating was lower than mine consistently). Rick Callaghan has won state tournaments at both games. The pool checkers master Jack Birnman was a very active chess player, but had a B rating.

Edward Lasker (not to be confused with Emanuel) wrote extensively on both games. He was a chess master, but not of world championship caliber. How good a checker player was he?

Are there any International Checkers or Russian checker players who are master or grandmasters at both games?

I should end this query by pointing out that there are other multi-gamers among chess and checker players in general. Hopper wrote a book on Backgammon. Emanuel Lasker claimed dominoes was an excellent game. Internation Master Larry Kaufman is a top notch Shogi player and has a great deal of interest in games in general, including checkers.
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby liam stephens on Thu Jan 24, 2008 2:58 pm

I think Philidor and J H Blackburne could be added to the list. In more recent times Tom Landry was a strong Chess player in his youth and reached the final of the English youth championship as a school boy. Pat Mc Carthy was also a strong Chess player at club level in London before he became interested in Draughts
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby Jay H on Thu Jan 24, 2008 3:22 pm

I believe Walter Hellman played as Chess as a youth,.....I also read in an interview that he and a family member would review Fischer's games...So, even though not competing,he probably could have...(?)

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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby Jay H on Fri Jan 25, 2008 7:31 pm

Greetings All,
Here is some interesting copy I found on the subject, from the News Pages of Churchill's Compilations...

Image

I believe the "Chardev" LVD is refering to might be better known as "Chernev"...(???/...Anyone...?) But, even more interesting is the fact that Lasker prepared for a Chess match by playing several hundred games of Checkers....!!!

Any thoughts...??

Regards

Jay H

BTW, If anyone is interested in the Scientific American article, I will scan and post it. it is, IMHO, one of the finest mainstream media articles ever written on the game of Checkers ....
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby liam stephens on Sat Jan 26, 2008 8:38 am

Hi Jay,

Yes, you are correct, that was Irving Chernev that was being referred to, and his Draughts book was published in1981 by Oxford University Press - The Compleat Draughts Player.
The copy I have is in hardback, but I believe there was also a paperback edition.

I would love to see that article from Scientific American if you can post it on here.

Regards - Liam.
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby Jay H on Sat Jan 26, 2008 9:51 am

liam stephens wrote:Hi Jay,

Yes, you are correct, that was Irving Chernev that was being referred to, and his Draughts book was published in1981 by Oxford University Press - The Compleat Draughts Player.
The copy I have is in hardback, but I believe there was also a paperback edition.

I would love to see that article from Scientific American if you can post it on here.

Regards - Liam.


Greetings Liam,
Yes, I thought it was Chernev....one of the books that I have been looking for. Rarely comes up on Ebay, and when it does, it commands a premium (and from every review I have ever read a very good book).....I believe Goodwin also reprinted it.
I had also read that Chernev gave up Checkers because he could not compete on a Masters level..... Regardless, he obviously recognized the challenge of our game , as noted by LVD and Churchill above.
I had a few of his Chess books , but I recently sold my entire Chess library (roughly 120 books) on Ebay. I studied Chess as a youngster, but, now I rarely pay any attention to the game...... I, of course, remember how to play, but I would not be a challenge to anyone
My analogy is that Chess is like a novel with faaaarrrrr tooooo many subplots (for me...), and Checkers is like a solid short story, that can be read and enjoyed in one sitting ....... All a matter of personal taste.

I will post the Scientific american article in the Checker Sharing Board later today......

Always a pleasure !!!

regards

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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby Jay H on Sat Jan 26, 2008 10:19 am

In the meantime, here are some old articles, (as reprinted in the ACF bulletin) somewhat on topic....
Image

Very interesting is Ed Scheidt's "Checker Story"........"Fischer refused to play Bidlack in Checkers"
Image

As Tommyc stated in another thread....
"Aye ye can post till the cows come home abt Fischer but you wont make him into a checker/draughts player no matter how deep you may dig"


:lol: :lol: :lol:

Regards

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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby Alex_Moiseyev on Sat Jan 26, 2008 10:31 am

Pedro Saavedra wrote:Are there any International Checkers or Russian checker players who are master or grandmasters at both games?

Rashid Nezhmetdinov from Tatarstan, Russia, was very strong USSR master in chess and checkers in 50's. One year he won Russian Federation Championship in Chess and was very close the same year (!!!) to win the same title of Russian Champion in Checkers ! He lost last round and finished as runner up. Later he was recognized by Russian Chess Federation as grandmaster. He never being grandmaster in Checkers because there were no such titles at the moment of his prime time.

This is the best example known to me, when someone was as strong as grandmaster in both forms of games.

You can read and learn more about this great player here: http://www.angelfire.com/games/SBChess/ ... /Nezh.html

Sincerely,

Alex Moiseyev
I am playing checkers, not chess.
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby Jay H on Sun Jan 27, 2008 2:52 pm

Danno12 wrote:The Compleat Draughts Player (ISBN: 0192175866)
Chernev Irving

http://www.abebooks.com/
...$100-125??!


Greetings Danno,
Yeah....seems a little steep for a book not written by a "Checker Player" per se......I have seen them on Ebay (rarely, but they show up every now and then), always get a few bidders, and always fetch a good price for the seller....

Regards

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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby jimloy on Mon Feb 18, 2008 5:44 pm

Here are a few checker games by chess players.

The first game is from Wood's Checker Studies, 1st ed. where Red is called Dr. Lasker, which would be Emanuel Lasker.

[Event "WCS, #89-5, v.4n"]
[Black "Lasker,Em."]
[White "Skillcorn"]
[Result "1-0"]
11-15 23-18 12-16 18x11 8x15 24-19 16x23 27x11 7x16 22-18 4-8 25-22 16-19 29-25 10-14 18-15 14-18 32-27 2-7 27-23 18x27 31x24 9-13 22-18 5-9 25-22 7-10 21-17 10-14 17x10 13-17 22x13 8-11 15x8 6x31 13x6 3x12 1-0

[Event "Hester's Defiance, p.102, v.333"]
[Date "1903"]
[Black "Pillsbury,HN."]
[White "Grover, S."]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
11-15 23-19 9-14 27-23 8-11 22-18 15x22 25x9 5x14 29-25 11-15 25-22 4-8 22-17 15-18 32-27 18-22 19-15 10x19 17x10 6x15 23x16 12x19 26x17 8-11 30-26 1-5 17-14 2-6 24-20 6-9 14-10 7x14 27-23 15-18 23x7 3x10 20-16 18-22 26x17 9-13 16-11 13x22 11-8 10-15 8-3 14-18 3-7 22-26 1/2-1/2

[Event "Duffy's Single Corner, v.87"]
[Black "Pillsbury,HN."]
[White "McIntee,J."]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
11-15 22-18 15x22 25x18 12-16 29-25 10-14 24-19 16-20 28-24 6-10 19-16 1-6 25-22 8-12 22-17 12x28 18-15 10x19 17x1 19-24 1-6 9-13 6-1 4-8 26-22 8-11 23-19 7-10 22-18 3-7 19-16 10-14 18x9 5x14 1-5 14-18 16-12 18-22 12-8 7-10 5-9 11-15 8-3 22-25 3-8 15-18 8-11 25-29 11-16 29-25 16-19 18-22 19-16 25-29 9-14 10x17 21x14 13-17 14-9 17-21 16-19 21-25 30x21 22-26 31x22 24x31 19-23 2-7 9-6 29-25 22-18 7-10 21-17 31-27 6-2 10-15 18x11 27x18 17-13 20-24 1/2-1/2

[Event "Kear's Ency., p.346, v.25"]
[Black "Strudwick,J."]
[White "Pillsbury,HN."]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
9-14 22-18 5-9 24-19 11-15 18x11 8x24 28x19 4-8 27-24 8-11 24-20 9-13 25-22 11-15 19-16 12x19 23x16 15-18 22x15 10x19 16-11 7x16 20x11 6-10 29-25 10-15 31-27 1-6 25-22 6-10 32-28 14-18 11-7 2x11 26-23 18x25 23x7 13-17 1/2-1/2

[Event "Denvir's Traps and Shots #15"]
[Black "anonymous"]
[White "Pillsbury,HN"]
[Result "0-1"]
11-15 23-19 9-14 27-23 8-11 22-18 15x22 25x9 5x14 29-25 6-9 25-22 9-13 24-20 2-6 22-18 6-9 28-24 4-8 31-27 13-17 19-15 10x28 23-19 14x23 21x5 7-10 27x18 3-7 0-1

While I will never be a Master at either game, I was an Expert (the class below Master) in chess at one time.
Last edited by jimloy on Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby jimloy on Tue Jul 07, 2009 4:40 pm

Here is a loss by Frank Marshall (sometimes challenger for the World Chess Championship):

[Event "E. Smith's Checker Classics"]
[Black "Marshall, F."]
[White "Smith, E."]
[Result "0-1"]
1. 11-15 23-18 2. 9-14 18x11 3. 8x15 22-17 4. 4-8 25-22 5. 8-11 29-25 6. 5-9 17-13 7. 11-16 22-17 8. 15-19?? (Smith recommends 15-18?, which also loses; 16-19 draws) 24x15 9. 10x19 17x10 10. 7x14 27-24 11. 19-23 26x19 12. 16x23 31-26 13. 23-27 32x23 14. 1-5 23-18 15. 14x23 26x19 16. 9-14 25-22 17. 3-7 30-25 18. 7-10 0-1

The book continues 13-9, and tells us that that is not how Smith continued.

Here are eleven chess games by Newell W. Banks: http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=45948

Amazing multi-game feats which didn't involve checkers: Irina Levitina was a challenger for the Women's World Championship in chess and won a World Championship in bridge. Billy Eisenberg won the World Championship in bridge five times and the World Championship in backgammon once. Oswald Jacoby won two World Championships in bridge and a World Championship in backgammon. Ken Smith was a Master at chess and a World Champion at poker.
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby jaguar72 on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:34 pm

HN (Harry Nelson) Pillsbury, as listed in Jim Loy's 18 February 2008 email, was a close (and very dangerous) rival of Emanuel Lasker for the Chess World Championship in the closing years of the nineteenth century...their win/loss/draw score was almost even. Pillsbury also defeated, at one time or another, all the other great chess players of that era.

Pillsbury died, alas, at ony 34 and never had a chance to play Lasker for the chess high crown.

I knew he played checkers (very well, no doubt) and whist as well as chess (sometimes all three at once) but I had never seen one of his games before reviewing Jim Loy's email.

Great stuff, Mr. Loy.

V/R,

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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby jimloy on Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:28 pm

This game is from Inside Checkers by Walter W. Walker (initials WWW). Pomeroy was a very strong player. I annotated this for my WWW page. Pillsbury played a fine game with two incredibly bad moves:

M. E. Pomeroy - H. N. Pillsbury
11-15 23-19 8-11 22-17 11-16 (the Glasgow) 24-20 16-23 27-11 7-16 20-11 3-7 28-24 7-16 24-20 16-19 25-22 9-14 (or 4-8) 29-25 2-7 (4-8 draws) 22-18 (others draw) 14-23 25-22 6-9 31-27 7-11 27-18 9-14 18-9 5-14 17-13 19-24 13-9 10-15 22-17 (26-23 seems strong) 14-18 9-5 12-16 (apparently 15-19 loses) 17-13 4-8 21-17 8-12 13-9 15-19 9-6! (a fine move, others draw) 1-10 5-1 10-15 17-13 18-23 32-28 (regains the piece) 15-18 1-6 18-22 26-17 23-26 30-23 19-26 28-19 16-23 6-10 26-31 13-9?? (unbelievable; 17-14 draws easily) 31-27?? (more unbelievable; 11-15 wins, of course) 9-6 27-24 6-2 23-27 draw.
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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby jaguar72 on Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:54 am

A. B. (Albert Beauregard) Hodges (1861-1944) was, I think, another of the older players hugely talented at both checkers and chess. He and Pillsbury played three formal chess games (+1 -1 =1) (at least those are all that are listed in Jacques Pope's Harry Nelson Pillsbury, American Chess Champion , the definitive biography of Pillsbury).

In Banks' Scientific Checkers (Newell Banks, 1929, Second Edition, p130) in the "Games and Annotations" section, Game No. 1-Bristol), Banks says:

"In selecting my first game I am paying a tribute to Mr. A. B. Hodges, the former American chess champion, who is also one of my best friends, as well as the friend of all American checker and chess fans. His name has been in the public eye for over half a century and I am glad to say he is still among us."

He then gives this amazing game with James Wyllie (!) playing black:

11-16 22-18, 8-11 24-20, 16-19 23-16, 12-19 25-22, 4-8 29-25, 9-14 18-9, 5-14 22-17, 11-15 20-16, 8-12 27-24, 3-8 25-22, 6-9 31-27, 9-13 22-18, 15-31 24-6, 1-10 27-24, 12-19 24-6, 2-9 17-3, 8-12 3-7 WW

This was one of the first games I played through when I finally got interested in checkers a couple of years ago. I remember sitting there at the final position absolutely mesmerized and stunned by the brilliance and beauty of it. I think I played it over half a dozen times from both sides of the board...I was amazed at it then and it has the same effect on me now (although I'll readily admit I have neither the competence, skill nor experience to judge how good a game it really is compared to other masterpieces...however, apparently Banks liked it so it must be d**n good...).

Anyhow, there you have it. Doesn't get much better.

V/R,

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Re: Multi-gamers in history

Postby whitefork on Wed Jul 08, 2009 10:03 am

Pierre Ghestem, international checkers and contract bridge http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierre_Ghestem
Alexandre Deschapelles - international checkers, chess, whist http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexandre_Deschapelles
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