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Arthur Ford Mackenzie
A F Mackenzie 
Number of games in database: 1
Years covered: 1880

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(born Oct-06-1861, died Jun-23-1905, 43 years old) Jamaica

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As a player, he did not attain the first rank. His games were brilliant, but circumstances never offered him the advantages of strong opponents and frequent practice which are necessary to first class play. But as a problemist, he is without peer.(1)

He was the author of Chess, Its Poetry and Its Prose (1887). He composed dozens of chess problems while blind.

(1) Obituary by Alain C. White from Lasker's Chess Magazine, Volume 2, June 1905

 page 1 of 1; one game  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. J Main vs A F Mackenzie 0-1161880Kingston, JamaicaB20 Sicilian

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  GrahamClayton: Photo:

Mackenzie was better known as a composer.

Jun-23-13  thomastonk: Additional information from "The Oxford Companion to Chess", 1996, p 241. Composer of Scottish descent, schoolteacher in Jamaica. Composed orthodox Two- and Three-movers. He lost his sight in early 1896, and after a period of despair he found that he still could compose. Then he begun to move away from the conventional style of his time.

Surprisingly, the following book is not mentioned: Alain C. White published 1905 "Chess lyrics; a collection of chess problems, by A. F. Mackenzie", and a supplement one year later: 500 pages altogether.

Moreover, Mackenzie said this about composing blind:
"I have lately come to think that problem composition is peculiarly a mental work, and that employment of board and men is in many ways a nuisance. ... Certainly the three-movers I composed since losing my sight are inifinitely superior, as a whole, to those composed before." (The quote is taken from "Children and Chess: A Guide for Educators" by Alexey W. Root, 2006, p 25.)

A picture and more information can be found at Edward Winter's Chess History, see C.N. 5289 and C.N. 5290.

Jun-23-13  DoctorD: Chess Lyrics and the supplement are both available at Google books.

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  Stonehenge: Another blind chess composer:

Petrus Albertus Koetsheid

Jun-04-14  zanzibar: BCM v24 Dec p493 has mention of the publication of <Chess Lyrics>

<by A.F. Mackenzie, of Jamaica [...] Edited by Alain C. White. -- The work will include over 275 problems composed during the years 1887-1904. [...] The collection will appear on June 10, 1905. It will consist of 500 pages. [...]>

Two version were available, for $3.00 and $3.50

For the full advert, see here:

Feb-18-15  zanzibar: MacKenzie took both 1st and 2nd prize in the "St. John Globe" Prize Problems, from the BCM v12 (Aug 1892) p368:

1st prize

click for larger view

(M2 by White)

* * * * *

2nd prize

click for larger view

(M2 by White)

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