Chess in 1947

 by Bill Wall


In 1947, the 1st national championship of the Republic of the Philippines was won by Horacio Tagle.


In 1947, John Wayne starred in Tycoon.  Between scenes, he carried a miniature chess board and played chess with the cast members.


In 1947, Steiner was the chess advisor for the movie Cass Timberlane, starring Spencer Tracy and Lana Turner. Steiner told Lana Turner, "Don't play chess. Sitting at a chess board for hours might make you fat and spoil your perfect figure." There were several chess scenes in the movie.


In 1947, ten-year-old Boris Spassky defeated Botvinnik in a simultaneous exhibition.


In 1947, the 1st postage stamp depicting chess was issued in Bulgaria.


In 1947, the 1st computer program for chess was specified by Alan Turing (a weak chess player).


In 1947, the 1st Idaho state championship was won by C.H. Stewart of Boise.


In 1947, the 1st Peru national championship was won by J. Perez.


In January, 1947, Miguel Najdorf played 45 opponents blindfold (+39=4-2) in 23.5 hours.


On January 8, 1947, Igor Vasilievich Ivanov (1947-2005) was born in Leningrad.  He was awarded the IM title in 1981 and the GM title in 2005.  He won the Canadian championship in 1981 and 1985.


On January 8 , 1947, C.H.O'D  Alexander won at Hastings 1946/47 with a 7.5 - 1.5 score. (source: Lethbridge Herald, Jan 8, 1947)


On January 14, 1947, Mary Gilchrist (1882-1947) died in Scotland.  She was British lady chess champion in 1929 and 1934.


On February 9, 1947, Boris Gulko was born in Erfurt, Germany.  He was Moscow chess champion in 1974.  He was awarded the IM title in 1975 and the GM title in 1976.  He tied for 1st in the 45th USSR championship in 1977.  He won the US championship in 1994 and 1999.  Gulko is the only player to have won the chess championship of both the Soviet Union and United States.


On February 24, 1947, Raymond (Ray) Devenney was born in Coleraine, Ulster.  He was Ireland co-champion in 1977 with Alan Ludgate.


On March 5, 1947, Benjamin Markovich Blumenfeld (1884-1947) died in Moscow at the age of 62.  He was one of the best players in Moscow between the First and Second World Wars.


On March 13, 1947, John Harold Belson (1906-1947) died in Toronto at the age of 47.  He was Canadian chess champion in 1934 and 1946.  He won the Toronto championship 7 times.   He was a native of Finland, coming to Canada with his parents as a child.    (source: Winnipeg Tribune, March 14, 1947)


In March, 1947, the 15th Soviet Championship was held, in Leningrad. It was won by Paul Keres (14-5 score). He was followed by Boleslavsky, Bondarevsky, Smyslov, Tolush, Bronstein, Lilienthal, and Flohr. There were 20 players.   Botvinnik did not play in the 15th USSR chess championship in protest over the cancellation of the world chess championship.


On March 24, 1947, Robert Hartoch (1947-2009) was born in Amsterdam.  He was European junior champion in 1963-64.  He was awarded the IM title in 1971.


On April 14, 1947, Andrew Karklins was born in Zeven, Germany.  He is a FIDE master and several time Illinois State Chess Champion.


On May 22, 1947, Gennady Nesis was born in Russia.  In 1985, he was awarded the GM title in Correspondence.


On May 25, 1947, Leon S. Lederman was born in the USSR.  He was awarded the IM title in 1947.


On May 28, 1947, Andrew Eden Soltis was born in Hazleton, Pennsylvania.  He was awarded the IM title in 1974 and the GM title in 1980.  He is one of the most prolific chess writers in the world.


In June, 1947, Alexander Kevitz won the Manhattan Chess Club championship, scoring 6.5 - 1.5.


On June 1, 1947, Mihai Suba was born in Bucharest.  He was awarded the IM title in 1975 and the GM title in 1978.  He was Romanian champion in 1980, 1981 and 1985.  In 2008, he and Larry Kaufman tied for 1st-2nd in the World Senior Chess Championship.


On June 3, 1947, Jan Banas was born in Nitra, Czechoslovakia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1979.


In June, 1947, Australia defeated Canada in a radio match.


On June 16, 1947, James Narraway died in Ottawa, Canada at the age of 90.  He was Canadian champion in 1893, 1897, and 1898.


On June 16, 1947, Mikhail Tseitlin was born in Babruysk, Belarus.  He was Moscow Champion in 1976 (jointly) and 1977.   He was awarded the IM title in 1977 and the GM title in 1987.


On July 1, 1947, the 1st tournament for the World Correspondence Chess Championship began with 78 players from 22 countries.  The tournament ended on March 31, 1953.  The winner was Cecil John Seddon Purdy of Australia.


On July 4, 1947, Itchak Radashkovich was born in Russia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1976.


On July 27, 1947, Sergiu-Henric Grunberg was born in Bucharest.  He was awarded the IM title in 1985.


On July 31, 1947,  Alberic O'Kelly de Galway won the 1st European Zonal tournament at Hilversum.


On August 18, 1947, Stefani Rosselli del Turco (1877-1947) died in Florence, Italy at the age of 70.  He was founder of the Italian Chess Federation.  He was unofficial Italian champion in 1919, 1920 and 1922 and official champion in 1923 and 1931.


On August 1, 1947, Ehrhardt Post (1881-1947) died in Berlin at the age of 65.  He was President of the German Chess Federation and a German chess master.


On August 3, 1947, Ciro A. Fernandez Bravo was born in Cuba.  He was awarded the IM title in 1975.


On August 5, 1947, Roberto Luis Debarnot was born in Argentina.  He was awarded the IM title in 1977.


On August 12, 1947, William Hartston was born in London.  He was awarded the IM title in 1973.  He was British champion in 1973 (after a play-off with Michael John Basman) and 1975.


On August 14, 1947, Marc Yoffie was born in New York City.  He is a FIDE master.  In 1968, he won the Marshall Chess Club championship.


On August 23, 1947, Isaac Kashdan won the 48th US Open (scoring 11.5 - 1.5), held in Corpus Christi.  86 players participated, a record at the time.  Sam Wilson, a Corpus Chrisit oil man, donated and extra $1,000 first prize money.  (source: Corsicana Daily Sun, Aug 23, 1947)


On Sepember 6, 1947, John Alan Grefe (1947-2013) was born in Hoboken, NJ.  He and Lubomir Kavalek were co-winners of the 1973 U.S. Championship.  He was awarded the IM title in 1975.


On September 7, 1947, Karen Ashotovich Grigorian (1947-1989) was born in Erevan, Armenia.  He was Armenian champion in 1969, 1970, and 1972.  He was Moscow Champion in 1975 and 1979.  He was awarded the IM title in 1982.


On September 8, 1947, Yaacov Bleiman (1947-2004) was born in Vilnius, Lithuania.  He was awarded the IM title in 1971.


On September 25, 1947, Otto Borik was born in Prague.  He was awarded the IM title in 1982.


On September 25, 1947, Gudmundur Sigurjonsson was born in Reykjavik.  He was Icelandic champion in 1965, 1968 and 1972. He was awarded the IM title in 1970 and the GM title in 1975.


In 1947, Britain won a radio match against Australia.  The match, which lasted 2 days, was the longest range chess match ever played, with 10,500 miles separating the contestants.  The players notified their moves through Overseas Telecommunications.


On October 2, 1947,  Zdenko Krnic (1947-2010) was born in Maribor, Yugoslavia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1976.  He was Editor-in-chief of Chess Informant from 1996 to 2010. 


On October 4, 1947, Elena Fatalibekova (nee Rubtsova) was born in Moscow.  She was the USSR Women’s Champion in 1974.  She was awarded the WGM title in 1977.  In 2000-1 & 2004, she won the women’s title in the World Senior Championship. She won the 2007-8 European Women Senior Championships.


On October 14, 1947, Heman Suradiradja was born in Sukabumi, Indonesia.   He was awarded the IM title in 1976 and the GM title in 1978.


On October 16, 1947, Guillermo Estevez-Morales was born in Menesses, Cuba.  He was awarded the IM title in 1972.  He was Cuban champion in 1975.


On October 29, 1947, Igor Foygel (Foigel) was born in the Ukraine.  He was awarded the IM title in 1982.  He won the Massachusetts championship in 1992, 1997, 2000, 2001, and 2005.  He was New England champion in 2007.


On November 9, 1947, Tamaz Georgadze was born in Tbilisi, Georgia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1975 and the GM title in 1977.


On November 15, 1947, Bojan Kurajica was born in Ljubljana, Yugoslavia (Slovenia).   He was World Junior Champion in 1965.  He was awarded the IM title in 1965 and GM title in 1974.


On November 25, 1947, Jiri Lechtynsky was born in Jablonec nad Nisou, Czechoslovakia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1974 and the GM title in 1982.


On December 9, 1947, Mark Dvoretsky was born in Moscow.  He was Moscow champion in 1973.  He was awarded the  IM title in 1975.  He is a FIDE Senior Trainer and noted chess author.


On December 9, 1947, Jana Hartston-Miles-Bellin (nee Malypetrova) was born in Prague.  In 1965 and 1967 she was the Czechoslovak Women's Champion.   She was awarded the WIM title in 1969 and the WGM title in 1982.  She was the British Women's Champion in 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976 and 1977 (after play-off) (as Hartston) and 1979 (as Miles).


On December 18, 1947, Zlatko Basagic was born in Derventa, Yugoslavia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1986.


On December 28, 1947, Miguel A.  Quinteros, Miguel was born in Buenos Aires.  He was Argentine champion in 1966 and 1980.  He was awarded the IM title in 1970 and the GM title in 1973.