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Monday, May 21, 2018

The Wayback Machine – Rzeschewski

      I came across the accompanying picture and couldn't resist posting it. In case you're wondering Rzeschewski is the short guy on the right! 
     Back on May 10, 1922, Sammy Rzeschewski, as Samuel Reshevsky was known in those days, returned to Providence, Rhode Island to give his second simultaneous exhibition sponsored by the Providence Chess Club at the Elk's Auditorium where he scored 16 wins and yielded two draws.  Those obtaining draws were L.H. Blount, the Providence champion, and S.L. Thompson of the Hospital Trust chess team. Sammy's score was an improvement on his previous year's record where he got nicked for four draws. 
     During a ten minute break Sammy sang two verses of America, Our Glorious Land which thrilled the audience and resulted in a prolonged applause. (I can't find a song by that title.) After the break he proceeded to hand out defeats to all but Blount and Thompson. 
     After the simul J.C. Cook, chairman of the entertainment committee of the chess club made a presentation of a gold metal to Sammy that was inscribed, “Samuel Rzeschewski, from the Providence Chess Club, May 10, 1922, in recognition of his genius in the field of chess and music.” Cook then gave a demonstration of the Knight's Tour and Blount played a blindfold game against a player named Harold Bonant. Rzeschewski spectated and threw in a few comments. Blount lost! 
    When he arrived in Providence, Rzeschewski paid his respects to the mayor which is when the picture was taken. He also met the President of Brown University, W.H.P. Faunce. While in town he stayed with Mr. Louis Shatkin, owner of a local manufacturing company. Mr. Shatkin also took Sammy on a spin around town in his automobile which left Sammy quite thrilled. Rzeschewski spent the night in Providence so he could sing the next day at an orphanage. As a boy, he loved singing as much as he loved chess. I don't know how he felt about either after reaching adulthood. 

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