Sarah's Chess Journal

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         The History and The Culture of Chess

Women in Chess - 1934-1950 - The Marshall Club
August  2007

     "One event, however, took on added importance as the years went on. This was the founding of the Marshall's Chess Divan at Keene's Chop House, 70 West 36th Street, New York, in 1915. The object was to establish in New York a central meeting place for lovers of chess, much on the same line as such famous resorts as Simpson's Divan in London and the Cafe de la Régence in Paris.
     It was my idea to make the Divan a place of instruction where young players would be encouraged and where all chess players could feel free to gather. Hudson Maxim was a frequent visitor at the Divan and his "War Game" was one of the attractions. The game was played on an enlarged board, made necessary by the increased army of pieces and the addition of the "flying machines."
     The friends who visited us at the Divan formed the nucleus of the present Marshall Chess Club, with its notable membership and palatial quarters. We occupied various premises from 1915 to 1922, when we decided to incorporate the club. Alrick H. Man was the first President and our first club house, purchased by a group of members, was at 135 West 12th Street. In 1931, this building was sold and the more commodious house at 23 West 10th Street, the club's present quarters and also my home, was purchased. Here we are glad to greet old friends and help to develop the young players of today. Many of the leading players of the country are members and new talent is constantly being developed."
- My Fifty Years of Chess (1942) by Frank J. Marshall



Marshall failed to mention that the current location of the Marshall Chess Club is an old, glorious brownstone purchased by Gustavus Adolphus Pfeiffer, a philanthropist,  pharmaceutical magnate and chess enthusiast, for the Marshalls as their private home and as the home of the Marshall Chess Club.

After Frank Marshall died on November 9, 1944, Caroline Marshall and Frank Marshall, jr. operated the club and after Frank, jr. died (at age 50), Caroline Marshall operate the club until  the late 60's when poor health forced her to give up Carrie Marshall died in 1971.




                                                                                                  Caroline Marshall

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