The Staats-Zeitung Cup
from the American Chess Magazine
As announced in our June number, the midsummer meeting of the New York State Chess Association will be held this year at the Murray Hill Hotel, Thousand Islands, August 2 to 7. A special feature will be the interstate match between the New York and Pennsylvania Chess Associations as already reported last month. The Ottendorfer cup will be competed for for the seventh time.
Any club in the State, upon notifying the secretary of its intentions and payment of the five dollars entrance fee to the treasurer, is entitled to send its champion or representative to compete for the cup. Such representative, however, must be a resident of the State and a bona fide qualified member of the club he represents. The trophy becomes the property of the club which wins it three times consecutively, or five times non-consecutively. It was won in 1891, 1894 and 1896 by the Manhattan Chess Club ; in 1892 by the City- Chess Club of New York ; in 1893 by the Staten Island Chess Club ; in 1895 by the Metropolitan Chess Club.
The Manhattan Chess Club will be represented this year by Mr. S. Lipschutz. The Rochester Club will also make a bid for the cup.
James H. Fisher, president of the Rochester Chess Club ; N. D. Luce, formerly president of the State association, and Ed. H. Vredenburgh are among those who may attend the meeting. Play will begin at 10 A. M. Monday, August 2. The class tournaments will be conducted upon the plan adopted at the last tournament. Each entrant will be placed in a class according to his playing strength.
The tournaments will begin at 2.30 P. M. Tuesday, July 28. Suitable prizes will be awarded the winners in each class. It should be borne in mind that the State Chess Association is an amateur organization and large cash prizes are discountenanced by the members. Persons expecting to play should bring their own boards and chessmen.
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The challenge cup was presented to the Association by Mr. Oswald Ottendorfer, the proprietor of the Staats Zeitung, in 1890. It was to be competed for by clubs, and will become the property of the club winning three times in succession, or five times altogether. The cup is valued at $200, and was specially made and designed in England. The first tournament was held in '91. Major J. M. Hanham won the trophy for the Manhattan Club and had the proud distinction of having his name first engraved on the cup. He also won the handicap tournament which took place simultaneously with the cup contest, and he holds the record of having won the two leading tournaments in the midsummer meeting.
The runner up in the first tournament for the cup was Emil Kemeny, and but for his inexperience he would have carried, for sure, the cup to the City Club. He did much better in the tournament of '92, when he beat all competitors and carried off the cup. The third tournament was held at Staten Island, and it was but proper that the Staten Island Chess Club should win. Its representative, A. B. Hodges, defeated all of his competitors, among whom were Pollock, Hanham and Delmar.
The tournament of '94 was held in Buffalo, and caused a superb race between the Manhattan, Brooklyn and Metropolitan Clubs, represented by Showalter, Pillsbury, and Albin. Showalter won, and the Manhattan Club held the cup for the second time.
Mr. E. Delmar has won more winter tournaments of the State Association than any other member. Less fortunate was he in the cup contest, and not until '95 did he succeed in winning that coveted prize, playing for the Metropolitan Chess Club.
Last year's tournament resulted for the third time in a victory for the Manhattan Chess Club, represented by S. Lipschutz. It will be seen that two more victories for the Manhattan Club will make the cup its absolute property.
Oswald Ottendorfer was a lawyer, turned revolutionary, turned journalist, turned politician, born in Moravia, ending up in New York after participating in a failed coup d'etat. He married the widow of his employer, the owner of the German-oriented American newspaper, the New York Staats-Zeitung. He held several political offices in NYC including a failed candidacy for mayor. Both Oswald and his wife Anna were well known and respected for their philanthopy.
"In 1890 a beautiful cup of the value of $500 was presented by Mr. O. Ottendorfer, proprietor of the "New Yorker Staats Zeitung," to the State Chess Association, and offered as a prize to the club whose representative should win it three times consecutively, or five times non- consecutively, the trophy to be known as the "Staats Zeitung Cup." The first contest for this cup occurred the following year."