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Friday, November 15, 2019

Revisiting David Gladstone

Gladstone (left) with Frank Marshall in 1923
     Several years ago I did a post on David Gladstone (1907 - June 15, 1964, 57 years old) that referenced a brief article that appeared in the September, 1923 issue of Boy’s Life magazine about a couple of young men attending New York University and Gladstone was one of them. 
     That was about all that I could find on him, but the other day I accidentally came across a couple of brief articles on him in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in 1922 and 1923.
     One article describing him as “precocious” informs us that the 15-year old Gladstone was a graduate of Barringer High School in Newark, New Jersey and was probably the youngest player who ever represented a college in the U.S. when he played for New York University in the Inter-collegiate Chess League.
     The article added that he started out well by drawing a much older opponent and “In doing so the little fellow kept a level head throughout and displayed excellent generalship. He disclaimed any relationship to the great British statesman, but gave every evidence of a precocious ability to handle complicated situations.” 
     The January 8, 1923 issue of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle carried a headline article reading A New Chess Prodigy. It says the 15-year old Gladstone learned to play chess from his father only 2-1/2 years previously and he was soon able to give give his father considerable odds thanks to his experience in high school and college play. It added that “the little fellow will, in time, develop into an expert player."
     He played in the 1944-45 U.S. Championship (won by Arnold Denker), but finished 17th out of 18 with a +2 -14 =1 score.
     In 1930 and he was president of the Queens Chess Club and he also played for the Manhattan Chess Club. At the age of 57, Gladstone suffered a fatal heart attack near his home on June 15, 1964.
     According to his N.Y. Times obituary Gladstone was among the youngest persons ever to be enrolled at New York University. He entered at 15 and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. After his graduation he went to Harvard for his law studies. For many years he maintained an office in Brooklyn until around 1949 when he went to work for the State Rent Commission and later when it became the City Rent Commission. 
     Here is an early Gladstone game from his inter-collegiate days that does not appear in the Chessgames.com database. 

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