Frank James Marshall

Frank James Marshall

The Planet Greenpawn

Frank James Marshall

Frank Marshall

Frank James Marshall (1877-1944)

Things were easy in 1968.

Man had not yet landed on the Moon, The Beatles had not broken up and
I had a chess library of about 3 books. (opening traps & 200 miniatures.)

Things were a OK in 1974.
Man had been to the moon, Fischer had won the world title (this compensated
for The Beatles breaking up) and my library had grown to about 12 books.

Amongst these 12 were ‘The Most Instructive Games of Chess Ever Played’ and
Alekhine’s best games.

These notes started to appear. This one from Alekhine disussing this position:

Alekhine Note

…and from Chernev.

Chernev note

…and Chernev again.

Chernev swindle note

Marshall - Capablanca New York 1918
Same game and Marshall actually set another trap in this game.

So who is this lad Marshall and I want to have people write things like that about me.

Of course I knew of the shower of gold coins game but very little else.

Then about 18 months later this dropped into my lap.

Marshall's Book

And things were great from that moment on.

These games are inspiring, instructive and just great fun to play over.
Be warned, once you had played over one you have to see another and another
and another….

Marshall’s jolly notes help you skip along. Look at this:

Marshall note

Marshall cheerfully gave up the pawn, then pseudo sacced the exchange, sacced a piece,
missed a quicker win when gaining his piece back and won a clinical endgame.

Marshall was a good endgame player, one of the best and for those of you
who think he was just a tricky swindler then you are way off base.

The word ‘positional’ is mentioned more times than ‘tactical’ in the notes
and he can be quite scathing in his notes regarding opening gambits.

Look at the introduction notes to this game and the comment after Black’s
2nd move.

Marshall note 2


That is David Janowski (another brilliant chess player) he has just had a pop at.

Let us look at a game, a game possibly 99% of you have never seen before.

Some things I know I learned and picked up from just this one game.

Players are not always aware of the latest up to date wrinkles in opening theory.
You must have will to win.
All positions now matter how drawish in appearance contain a trick or two.
Luft (giving an escape square for your King) is not just any old move you slip in.
Some endings are won just by looking at them and knowing they are won.
You don’t have to bust your head figuring out if they are won.
And of course, Frank Marshall was a great chess player and not just a setter
of “….typical Marshall traps.”

F. Marshall - S. Sharp Atlantic City 1920.

Notes by Frank Marshall (FM) and comments from me based on Marshall’s notes.

That wee trick I mentioned.

Of course nobody is going to fall for that…..

Perhaps some examples from RHP games with the exact same pattern
will convince you that players do indeed fall for such things.
Ravello - asadzadeh RHP 2007

Starryknight14 - OffWhite RHP 2005

dsarge30 - rsand2 RHP 2006

This is good.

DreamKrusher - monofin86 RHP 2006

Where DreamKrusher’s dreams are crushed.

The Duck
Wow green cheeks, How long did it take you to think up that one liner?

I said something about ‘Luft’ and not playing just any old move.

One of the last games to finish when I did my 54 game blitz thing on here.
P.54 W.39 D.4 L.11 (and lost approx 200 rating points). 🙂
In the following game I recalled the ‘Luft’ moment.

borntodestroy - greenpawn34 RHP 2012

Chess Coincidence No.327

P. Leonhardt- F. Marshall, Barmen 1905

Magnus and Marshall

Magnus with the bust of Marshall (I wonder if Magnus will one day bust the Marshall.)

And that’s it.

Me and the Duck sitting on a wall waiting for Mrs GP to go Christmas Shopping.

Me and the Duck

The Duck
Hey GP you did a piece on Marshall without showing the gold coins game.

I know. There was a lot more to Marshall than just one game and one move.

The pictures of Marshall on this blog came from the Marshall Chess Club.

Marshall Chess Club

And some lad has spotted the cowboy connection with Marshall.
(as in sherrif and possibly as in Frank and Jesse James).
This is quite good, it captures Marshall’s finest hour, Cambridge Spring 1904.

\" class="btn btn-sm btn-std"> Marshall of Dodge City

...and if you are looking to for a Christmas present for your favourite enemy.

The Worst Ever Chess Book

Even if I say so myself, I think this is one of the best RHP Blogs I've done.

The thread accompanying this blog is Thread 150160

Posted to The Planet Greenpawn

Show Comments (8)
Comments (8)

  • Posted 2445 days 16 hours and 25 minutes ago
    Standard membere4gambit
    The best part of Marshall's book is his autobio
  • Posted 2551 days 13 hours and 14 minutes ago
    Standard memberDan Mortimer
    I do love reading your blog, its very amusing, however I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. Really must learn all this KGB4 - QK2 stuff means then I am sure all will become clear.
  • Posted 2552 days 4 hours and 4 minutes ago
    Yes. Excellent blog in a long series!
    Happy Christmas and New Year GP!
    Looking forward to your 2013 stuff already.
    Best wishes. SN
  • Posted 2554 days 23 hours and 38 minutes ago
    Standard memberTimmyBx
    I agree, great blog! LOL at you and the Duck! How funny!! Great games, great examples, and great patterns to burn in our brains!
  • Posted 2555 days 18 hours and 8 minutes ago
    Learned a lot on new things today. Thanks.
  • Posted 2555 days 23 hours and 41 minutes ago
    Standard membernimzo5
    Frank Marshall finally gets his due!
  • Posted 2556 days 10 hours and 11 minutes ago
    Those golden olden days.....
  • Posted 2556 days 10 hours and 20 minutes ago
    Standard memberChessPraxis
    cool stuff from back in the day.
    Last Post
    06 Dec '19
    Blog since
    06 Jul '10