Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Peabody Hotel and Memphis Chess

The Peabody Hotel, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, was for the Memphis Chess Club a great playing site in the 1970's.  The 4,256 square foot Venetian Room the club used held a very large tournament and you could enjoy the seating in the lobby while watching the Peabody ducks between rounds.  For current information, go to the Peabody's web site: http://www.peabodymemphis.com/

Tennessee Chess News Volume 16, No. 1 January 1974

Tournament Calendar

January 19-20, 1974

HUNTER WEAKS MEMORIAL OPEN--Sheraton Peabody Hotel, Memphis.  5-SS, 50/2, EF $15. TCA membership required for Tennessee Residents. Prizes $$ 200, 100, 50 A40 B35, C30, D25, E20, Unrated 15: trophies to top 3, top A,B,C,D,E, & Unrated. Limit to one prize per winner.  Reg. 8-9 AM 1/19. Rounds 9-2-7, 8-1.  ENT: Frank Hemphill, ____Aubra, Memphis TN 38111

Tennessee Chess News Volume 16. No. 2 March 1974

James Wright Wins Hunter Weaks Memorial

Beating out Master Elliot Winslow (St. Louis) on tie-break, James Wright (Memphis) won the Hunter Weaks Memorial with a perfect 5-0 score.  Seven players scored 4-1 in this order after tie-break: 3rd John Hurt (Memphis), 4th Mahlon Smith (Memphis), 5th Ed Middleton (Memphis), 6th Mike Webb (Memphis), 7th Jack Smith (Memphis, 8th Gary Pylant (Memphis) and 9th Peter Shirley of Forrest City, Ark.  The event attracted 59 players.  The Tourney was directed by Frank Hemphill, assisted by Gary Pylant, Morris Middleton, and Jim Little.  Other prize winners were:  Class A - John Hurt; B - Gary Pylant, C - Mike Webb, D - David Myers, E - Michael Bock, Unrated - David Abel.  (For final results for all entries go to this link: http://www.memphischess.com/files/TCN/TCN1974/TCN-March1974Vo16No2Pg20.pdf)

Blog editor:  My first USCF rated tournament was this 1974 Hunter Weaks Memorial, and I was entry number 59.  I won my first round game and lost the next four afterward.  It is still a fond memory.

Tennessee Chess News Volume 16. No. 2 March 1974

Book Reviews

Selected Games of Hunter Weaks - published by the Memphis Chess Club.  The first book ever published on chess in Tennessee.  A fine tribute to a great player who had a vital influence on chess, not just in Memphis, but also in Tennessee, and the South in general.  The biographical sketch is well written by players of the Memphis club.  It gives insight in Hunter as the player and also as an individual in other interests, such as classical music and Shakespeare.  The fine selection of games are accompanied by excellent annotation, sometimes even with Hunter's own ideas and analysis.  It includes simultaneous exhibitions against U.S. Grandmasters Bobby Fischer and Samuel Reshevsky, and Yugoslav Grandmaster Trifunovic.  Also, you will find several games he played in postal chess in which he excelled and also in blindfold chess.  In addition there are games against other Memphis players such as B.B. Jefferson and Uncle Bob Scrivener who gained national prominence in their prime. (review by Peter Lahde)

(Note:  An online version is of the book is available at the Memphis Chess Club's Archive link:  http://www.memphischess.com/Selected-Games-of-Hunter-Weaks.html)

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