An official message has been transmitted to authorities
in the U.S.S.R. suggesting that a RADIO CHESS MATCH be held between the
leading players of both countries. If the invitation is accepted, the match
will probably be held in January or February, 1844, under the sponsorship of
CHESS REVIEW and the U. S. Chess Federation. The
Russian War Relief will also co-operate in staging the match and all
receipts from the sale of tickets to witness the match will be donated to
All arrangements have now been completed at this end.
Our leading masters, including Marshall, Reshevsky, Fine, Kashdan and
Horowitz have agreed to play on the U. S. team. Maurice Wertheim, President
of the Manhattan Chess Club, had worked in close co-operation with the
editors of CHESS REVIEW and has agreed to head a
committee in charge of financial and other arrangements. Radio transmission
facilities have been secured. If a favorable reply is received from Moscow,
final details of the match will be agreed upon and announced by
The invitation to the chess authorities in
Moscow was conveyed last month by an official of the Russian War Relief.
Dated October 21s1 and signed by George Sturgis, President of the U. S.
Chess Federation, the message read as follows:
"To The Moscow Chess Committee of the V. S. F. K.,
Moscow, U. S. S. R.
"As President of the United States Chess Federation,
I hereby extend a cordial invitation to the leading chess masters of
the Soviet Union to take part in a RADIO CHESS MATCH
against a team of masters representing the U.S.A.
"The facilities for the transmission by radio of the
moves of such a match, including the cost of transmission both ways, will be
met by the subscriptions of private individuals in this country. All
receipts from the sale of tickets to witness the playing of the match will
be donated to the Russian War Relief.
"We sincerely hope this will meet with your approval
and respect, that the U. S. S. R. has continued to foster and
develop cultural pursuits during the war. In particular, we have been
greatly impressed by the widespread interest in chess in the U. S. S. R. The
contests between your great chess masters at the tournament held in Moscow,
Sverdlovsk and other centers have been followed and discussed by thousands
of chess players in this country. We feel that our common interest in chess
can serve as a fruitful means of developing culture ties between our two
countries and that the proposed match will go far to increase the friendly
relations between us.
"We realize that your chess masters are serving their
country in the armed forces and in other ways. The same condition exists
here. Nevertheless, we know that the cultural importance of chess -
and its beneficial effect of morale in wartime - have made it possible
to hold important tournaments in both the U. S. S. R and the U. S. A.
We hope that it will also be possible for you to arrange this international
Radio Chess Match.
"In this country, the proposal has been met with the
enthusiast approval of all concerned. Our leading players, including
Grandmasters Marshall Reshevsky, Pinkus, Adams, Shainswit, and others, have
gladly agreed to play on the American team. Mr. Maurice Wertheim,
President of the Manhattan Chess Club has agreed to head a committee in
charge of financial and other arrangements. The Editors of our official
organ, CHESS REVIEW, who suggested and fostered this
proposal, will sponsor the match in cooperation with the Unite States Chess
Federation and will give wide publicity to the proceedings. The
officials of the Russian War Relief have pledged their whole-hearted support
"The actual details of the match can be agreed upon as
soon as we receive your acceptance of this invitation. Tentatively, we
suggest that the team, on each side, should consist of not less than five
and not more that ten players. The most suitable time would be January,
1944. The match could probably be completed in two or three days, provided
transmission is not interrupted.
"We await your reply with eager anticipation.
GEORGE STURGIS, Pres., U. S. Chess Federation."
The U. S. Chess Team at the Stockholm Olympics in 1937.
Left to right are:
Fritz Brieger (who accompanied the team), Samuel Reshevsky, Isaac Kashdan,
I. A. Horowitz, Reuben Fine,
Team Captain Frank J. Marshall.
All these masters have agreed to play in the proposed RADIO CHESS MATCH
against leading players of the Soviet Union. U. S. teams, victorious
in four international Olympics, have never competed against U.S.S.R.
actual Radio Match took place Sept. 1-4, 1945. Frank J. Marshall died on
November 9, 1944.