Adele Rivero Belcher
Aug 26, 2012, 4:52 PM
I've written several times about Adele Rivero:
Many people may not be aware that besides being a U.S. Women's Champion (although not the first as is usually bandied about), she was the first women to win an open (overall) State Championship when she became the Vermont Champion in 1954.
I also found an interesting article in the Parade section of the August 29, 1936 issue of "Literary Digest" -
"More American women would take up chess if there was anything in it for them,"
declared Mrs. Adele Rivero, twenty-eight, the undisputed, if unofficial, woman's chess champion of the United States. "The game needs a whale of a lot of publicity just as bridge had. At the present time there are very few American women who even play a passable game."
With the current tournament at Nottingham in progress and plans being laid for the seventh International Chess Olympiad in Stockholm next year, several American clubs were reported trying to organize a women's team to represent this country.
"But where are we to get the funds?" asked Mrs. Rivero. "A chess player, as such, has a hard time making a living. I'd go gladly if I knew I could get my job back later."
Blond, with blue eyes, and an "A" rating for chess—even among men—Mrs. Rivero
is a stenographer. During the winter she plays one tournament a week and receives from ten to fourteen dollars for the four hours of play. Born in Antwerp, she has been in New York for eighteen years and has been playing chess for three seasons.
She doesn't like bridge and her greatest ambition is some day to meet Miss Vera Menchikova, thirty-two-year-old Czechoslovakian chess champion. Since residing in
England she is known as Miss Menchik but is the most highly respected player of her sex.
Among the thousand-odd American women chess players, others who rate highly are Mrs. Mary Bain, formerly of Los Angeles; Mrs. Raphael E. McCready, Mrs. W. I. Seaman, Mrs. L. Milton, Miss Celia Fawns and Mrs. William Slater — all of New York.