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Ernest Morphy - the Quincy Connection
February 2006

From Lawson:

"About this time (1847), Paul expressed himself in another direction in chess, as related by Ernest Morphy and General John Tillson. (General Tillson and Ernest Morphy both lived for some years during the 1850’s in Quincy, Illinois, and they were co-editors of the chess column of the Quincy Whig in 1859) In a letter to Gustave Reichhelm, chess editor of the Philadelphia Sunday Times, General Tillman discusses a chess problem “that . . . was composed by Paul Morphy before he was ten years of age. This is a fact . . . “ which may account for its being a little problem...."

Colonel (Brevet General) Tillson 

     John Tillson, long a resident of Quincy, was born at Hillsboro, Illinois, October 12, 1825. He was educated at Hillsboro Academy and Illinois College, but did not graduate. He was graduated from the Transylvania Law School in Kentucky in 1847 and was admitted to the bar at Quincy, Illinois, the same year. He practiced law two years in Galena, when he returned to
Quincy. Colonel Tillson married Miss Ann Eliza Wood, daughter of John Wood, one of the founders of Quincy, who became governor of Illinois on the death of Governor Bissell.
     In 1861, Mr. Tillson enlisted and after three months' service became the lieutenant-colonel of the Tenth Illinois Infantry. On the promotion of Colonel James D. Morgan to the position of brigadier-general, Mr. Tillson was made colonel. In July, 1865, he was mustered as a brevet brigadier-general. For two years he held a commission as captain in the regular army. In 1869-70 he was editor of the Quincy Whig.
     In 1873, he was elected representative in the twenty-eighth Illinois general assembly to succeed Nehemiah Bushnell, who died in office. During the same year Colonel Tillson was appointed collector of internal revenue for the Quincy district and served till 1881.
     Colonel Tillson died August 6, 1892. His wife, who was born at Galena, Illinois, in 1827, died at her home in Omaha, Nebraska, March 25, 1905, and was buried in Quincy. Three children survive, namely, the Misses Nannie and Ada Tillson, and one son, John Tillson, all of whom reside in Omaha, Nebraska. The son is connected with the engineering department of the
Union Pacific Railroad Company. [source]

From the Steinwedell history:

In 1859 William Steinwedell married Louisa A. Morphy, born in New Orleans of French parents, who had come to Quincy in 1857 with her parents.

From the 1866 Quincy directory

MORPHY ERNEST; res Eighth ws 2 n Spring.
Morphy Ernest L., jr., book-keeper, 115 Maine; res 8th ws 2 n Spring.

From Neil Brennen, August 2000.

The following players would no doubt have been anonymous, had not a
distinguished name played for one side. Unfortunately the PHILADELPHIA
EVENING BULLETIN column does not say if the E. Morphy leading the Quincy
players was Ernest, Paul's uncle, or Edward, Paul's older brother. Either
one of them would have been the second best chess player in the Morphy
family, and one of the best chess players of New Orleans.

[Event "Telegraph Match"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "1860.01.19"]
[Round "?"]
[White "St Louis CC"]
[Black "Quincy CC"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "C51"]
[PlyCount "73"]

{Played by telegraph between the Chess Clubs of St Louis, Mo., and
Quincy, Ill., January 18th, 1860. St Louis Chess Club Messrs. Skinner,
Brown, Daenzer, Mysenberg, Jenks, Quincy Chess Club E. Morphy, Tillson,
Roland, Richardson.}

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Bc5 6.O-O d6 7.d4 exd4 8.cxd4 Bb6 9.d5 Nce7 10.e5 Bg4 11.Bb2 dxe5 12.Bxe5 Nf6 13.Qb3 O-O 14.Bxf6 gxf6 15.Nbd2 Ng6 16.h3 Bxf3 17.Nxf3 Qd6 18.Rae1 Rae8 19.Rxe8 Rxe8 20.Re1 Rxe1+ 21.Nxe1 Ne5 22.Qg3+ Kh8 23.Bb3 c5 24.Nd3 Bc7 25.Nxe5 Qxe5 26.Qxe5 Bxe5 27.Bc4 Kg7 28.Kf1 a6 29.a4 Kf8 30.Ke1 Ke8 31 Kd2 Kd7 32.Kc2 Kc7 33.a5 Kd7 34.Kb3 Bd6 35.Bd3 h6 36.Bf5+ Kc7 37.Bd3 { drew the game and won the match. Philadelphia Evening Bulletin, January 28th, 1860.} 1/2-1/2

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