In 1964 I purchased an ivory chess set from a Chinese merchant in Aden. The 'black' pieces are stained red/brown ivory, they are plain style pieces. The unusual thing is that many of the pieces unscrew to reveal tiny secret compartments, anyone shed some light on the set?
Hello, visitor - if You have something of interest to say re collecting chess pieces, something in these pages - this is the place to contribute. Everything of interest is welcome .....
"Deutsche Bundesform" - I find myself in the situation of having to answer my own post - but here is an interesting answer to it, and a bit of information.
The answer arrives in the first number - english language version - of the excellent german culture-oriented magazine "Karl" - see here. Karl has been around for 8 years, has established a reputation for superbly researched historical and culture-oriented articles on chess - and now has decided to conquer the english language market, where only New in Chess Magazine provides on occasion similar material (of top quality, ofcourse).
It seems the Nazi authorities and the local Munich Nazi tops wanted to spare no effort ot make the Munich 1936 Olympiad a resounding success for the "New Germany" they were propagating. Part of preparation was to have a new chess set designed - the one mentioned above - in order to repel the Staunton sets invented in "treacherous Albion", and adopted by a still fledlging FIDE.
Please read the whole article by Michael Negele (of the Ken Whyld Association), it is very interesting. Certainly a few hundred sets were made, and used throughout the Munich event.
These chess pieces seem to have had a long life after the war in German clubs, until replaced as is natural by newer pieces. The average life span of a wooden set in active club life will rarely exceed 30 years, because pieces get lost, broken, or simply chipped and chapped - and club members change as well.
For the "Bundesform" set, it remains to determine who designed these sets, in which manufactury(ies) were they produced, and where did the postwar set in the same style originate from.
Welcome to this site dedicated to chess collecting in all forms. Basically, I would like to
- provide a platform for chess collectors,
- start discussions and mind meetings rolling on chess collecting, especially with regards to the "major game" of chess sets,
- present part of my own collection - not all of it, that would be tedious !
My collection is fairly large, very eclectic, with a strong penchant for non-mainstream chess sets, both from necessity as from inclination. There is a noticeable lack of the grand classic showpiece chess sets - every collector has to make ends meet and conform to available means like time, space and - well, bigtime, what? All in all, this is a middle echelon collection, but with aspects that should be interesting for many collectors or collectors to be. Where my collection is lacking, any viewer or interested visitor can refer him or herself to the sites of other collectors as cited in the Links section, all of them with superb displays and wonderful sets. Nobody can assemble all the chess sets made over time, nor would it be desirable - this would conform to the old chinese curse: "May You live in interesting times!"
In the meantime, be most welcome to flutter through my pages, and I hope they can be as enjoyable and interesting to You as the setup of them has been to me. Please contribute as well, react to essays and articles of mine or others, leave comments, post opinions or questions of Your own in this forum, or others to come, and therefore make use of a page that is intended to be useful for You!
Every now and then on ebay - the chess collectors evening course, if he knows how to read between the pages! - I see chess sets of a decidedly modern cut pop up, which also appears on the title page of Kurt Richter's Tournament book from the Chess Olymnpiad Munich 1936! Comments required.....
PPS. Until some years ago I have found similar sets still being sold by chess shops - they were then labeled as "Deutsche Bundesform" - would that mean it was a design officially sanctioned by the German Chess Federation?