March 25, 2010
British official first champion born on Valentine’s day. In 1860 he began to visit the Divan on Saturday afternoons. By 1862 he was too strong for Alexandre Anderssen at the odds of Knight. In 1864 he won the majority of a series of game with MacDonnel on level terms. In 1865, he won a match against Wilhelm Steinitz (+7-3=2), playing odds of a pawn and a move. In November, 1866, at the age of 21, he won the 1st British Chess Association Challenge Cup, held in London, becoming the first official British Chess Champion. He remained the youngest titleholder for over a century. In June 1867, he took 5th at Paris, won by Ignatz Von Kolisch. In September 1867, he took 3rd-4th at the 3rd Congress of the British Chess Association at Dundee, Scotland, won by Gustav Neumann. While he was in Dundee, he learned that he had tuberculosis (consumption). He worked at Lloyds Bank, but gave up his employment when he discovered he had tuberculosis. In 1868-69, he tied for 1st place at the 2nd British Chess Association Challenge Cup, held in London. He lost the play-off to Joseph Blackburne. In 1870, he took 6th-7th at Baden-Baden, Germany. In 1872, he took 3rd-5th at the 2nd British Chess Federation Congress in London.In 1872 he took the chess editorship of the Field for two years but died of tuberculosis on February 1875, he was 29. Wilhelm Steinitz called him ‘the young Morphy’ and others ‘A Morphy without book knowledge’.