Capablanca NYC Simultaneous – Feb 12, 1931

[Update: Please see this post as well:, it has the complete listing of teams and members.]

As I’ve said before, I view this blog primarily as a medium for communicating working notes for my adventures (and misadventures) on the Biographer’s Bistro on <CG>.

Here then, without further adieu is what I could find about the team compositions of the simul (more context follows below):

Bank of America CC    --  Rojas, Borman, Eissenburg, Schultz
Bellevue Hospital CC  --  Fitzgerald, Brown, DeSanto, Kirkland
Binghamton CC         --  Anderson, Bryant, Evans, Miller
Brooklyn CC           --  Bruzza, Leu, Dietz, Varnum
Brooklyn Institute CC --  Adams, Wechsler, Hecht, Slater
Bushwick HS           --  McClellan, Sunnuck, Meyer, Goldberg
CCLA                  --  Chadwick, Frere, Hoover, Cossman
Chatham CC            --  Brown, Montchyk, R. Edwards, W. Edwards
Columbia Univ         --  A. S. Kussman, T. H. Beyer, R. W. Borsodi Jr., W. G. Madow
Demarest,HS           --  Nathan, Sciorsci, Clementz, Cordits
East Orange HS        --  E. McCormick, S. Lottridge, H. Pump, H. Snowden
Empire City CC        --  McDermott, Bloch, Kahn, Lifschitz
Gracie Sq CC          --  Willman, Willman, Ferguson, Beck
Harvard Univ          --  Stark, Saron, Davis, Chevalier
Holsatia CC           --  Treiber, Sporkmann, Strobl, Adler
Ladderites CC         --  F. Reinfeld, R. Root, L. Glass, G. Green
Manhattan CC          --  R. Fine, D. McMurray, E. Schwartz, L. Stephens
Marshall CC           --  Pfeiffer, Klahre, Tholfsen, Forsberg
Newark Evening News   --  Rand, Goldberg, Spielman, Bardache
NY Edison             --  C. Totten, J. Stockmar, G. Cohn, Baumbach
Park Avenue CC        --  Rogge, Beck, Sechtman, Tenner
Princeton Univ        --  D. C. Forbes, D. A. Stern, R. K. Farnham, H. R. Huntington
Rice CC               --  Smirka, Kahn, Becker, Kahrs
Staten Island CC      --  Solzano, Runyon, Sharp, Lambrecht
The Sun Club          --  Craig, Hinrichs, Rathbun, Munsey
Weekhauken CC         --  William J. Bryan, Col. Charles E. Stewart Jr., Arthur Wortman, J. R. Denton
West Point Academy    --  Col. C. P. Echols, Col. Clayton E. Wheat, Major H. R. Harmon, Lieut. R. E. Randall
West Side YMCA        --  Herisse, Hassialis, Huszar, Weiss

I am afraid that it must remain unattributed, beyond this blog posting. Perhaps others can source the proper references. Normally I like to cite all references, but in this case, it would add little in terms of reliability or authority. Some of the above can be cross-checked against info in Winter’s links below. Actually, Winter publishes several AP photographs, which I believe come from Helm’s American Chess Bulletin, taken at the event. The captions in several of those photographs list the members of the team at a given table.

Here is some of the discussion from <CG> to give some context:

May-05-15 zanzibar: Capablanca gave a simul in NYC, 1931:
<Chess, like many other things, was in the doldrums for some time after the Wall Street crash. Helms, the editor of the American Chess Bulletin, wanted a publicity stunt, and he arranged a monster simultaneous display to take place in the 7th Regiment Armoury in New York.There were 200 players on fifty boards in teams of four; Marshall, Ed. Lasker, Horowitz, Fine, Reinfeld, Kupchik, and other leading US masters were there, as officials, spectators, or contestants; addresses were made by State Governor Whitman, G. E. Roosevelt, and the Cuban ConsulGeneral; the regimental band opened the proceedings with a rendering of the Star-Spangled Banner; and two and a half thousand people came to watch.Capablanca finished all the games in eight and a half hours, having walked about seven miles. He scored 28+ 6-16->This is from <The Unknown Capablanca>, Hooper & Brandreth, Courier Corporation, 1993, p164.The book has an annotated game, <Capablanca — S. Bruezza/P. Leu/G.C. Dietz/R.M. Varnum>.This shows up as just <Bruezza> in <MillBase>, and as <Brooklyn CC,> in the file <crawfb5> sent me.Capablanca vs Fine, 1931 is another game where only one player is listed as opposing Capablanca, when in reality there were four. Despite Fine’s claims to having played the game alone (see some posts in the forum, especially Capablanca vs Fine, 1931 (kibitz #5) and Capablanca vs Fine, 1931 (kibitz #26)) historical accuracy should have the game listed either with the entire consulation team, or the team name.Of course, the young 16-year old Fine gets all the glory, but it’s certainly misleading to list the game as a one-on-one. And it’s disrespectful to the unnamed players, imo.

According to <crawfb5>‘s data, the game was played by <Manhattan CC>. Credit where credit due.

May-05-15 zanzibar: Various photographs from the simul are availble from Winter:…shows a picture of the U.S. Military Academy, aka West Point CC.The caption mentions a Dr. G.C. Dohme from Baltimore, and Charles R. Macauley (note spelling), an editorial cartoonist from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle (BDE).I’ve written about Macauley before:…
May-05-15 zanzibar: More info on Capablanca’s simuls in the earlier years of the 30’s introduces an “indirect rivalry” between none other than Alekhine himself, naturally:<Further “indirect rivalry” between Capablanca and Alekhine in those years- and another success for the Cuban was reflected in their duel of simultaneous displays against strong teams. In February, 1931 Capablanca gave a display in New York on 50 boards against 200 players consulting in teams of four. Some 2,500 spectators watched this unusual battle, which ended in the ex-champions victory (+28, -6, =16). A year later, in Paris, Alekhine beat this record by playing on 60 boards against five allies at each. His result was +37, -6, =17. That same year (1932) he further improved on this feat by playing in New York under the same conditions as Capablancas exhibition, and achieving a result of +30, -6, =14. Nevertheless, it was Capablanca who made the last thrust in this duel: in Havana on May 14, 1932, he gave a display on 66 boards against five allies at each and achieved the excellent score of +46, -4, =16.>From <Jose Raul Capablanca: Third World Chess Champion> (Chesscafe World Chess Champions Series)
Isaak Linder
SCB Distributors, Nov 5, 2013(Sorry, but for some reason the source I used lacked page numbers)

The following photographs are copied from Edward Winter and are included here both for their intrinsic historical interest, and primarily to compare with the list at the top of this page:

Table 1 – Weekhauken CC — (Arthur Wortman, William J. Bryan, Charles E. Stewart, J. R. Denton)
Table 2 – Newark Evening News — (Rand, Goldberg, Spielman, Bardache) [not shown]

Table 19 – Columbian University — (W. G. Madow, T. H. Beyer, A. S. Kussman, R. W. Borsodi Jr.)

Table 22 – Princeton University — (D. C. Forbes, D. A. Stern, H. R. Huntington, R. K. Farnham)
Table 21 – Yale University — (??)

Table 25 – U.S. Military Academy (aka West Point CC) — (Lieut. R. E. Randall, Col. C. P. Echols, Col. Clayton E. Wheat, Major H. R. Harmon)

cn5390_capablanca4Edward Winter discusses this simultaneous, including the photographs above, in his CN #5390:

Where there is also given some consideration to Fine’s claim that he essentially conducted the end of the game himself, while others (Denker) also give MacMurray a share of the credit for the finish of the Manhattan CC game against Capablanca.



3 thoughts on “Capablanca NYC Simultaneous – Feb 12, 1931

  1. Pingback: Capablanca NYC Simultaneous – Feb 12, 1931 – (Slight Return) | Zan Chess

  2. Pingback: Solution to Visual Puzzle – 2015-04-06 | Zan Chess

  3. Pingback: Charles Raymond McAuley / Charle R. Macauley – political cartoonist | Zan Chess

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