Members · Prefs · Laboratory · Collections · Openings · Endgames · Sacrifices · History · Search Kibitzing · Kibitzer's Café · Chessforums · Tournament Index · Players · Kibitzing

Henry Ernest Atkins
H E Atkins 
Photograph courtesy of 
Wikimedia Commons.
Number of games in database: 126
Years covered: 1892 to 1937

Overall record: +63 -25 =38 (65.1%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 Orthodox Defense (14) 
    D55 D60 D51 D63 D52
 Ruy Lopez (10) 
    C66 C84 C65 C73 C62
 King's Indian Attack (5) 
 Queen's Indian (4) 
    E12 E16
 Queen's Gambit Accepted (4) 
    D21 D24 D25
With the Black pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (18) 
    C66 C63 C87 C77 C90
 King's Indian (5) 
    E61 E90 E67 E80
 Sicilian (5) 
    B40 B32 B29 B45
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (5) 
    C87 C84 C92 C90
 Old Indian (5) 
 Tarrasch Defense (4) 
    D32 D33
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   H E Atkins vs H Jacobs, 1915 1-0
   Tartakower vs H E Atkins, 1922 0-1
   H E Atkins vs Gunsberg, 1902 1-0
   H E Atkins vs Rubinstein, 1922 1-0
   J D Tresling vs H E Atkins, 1899 0-1
   H E Atkins vs Blackburne, 1909 1-0
   H E Atkins vs J F Barry, 1910 1-0
   R Scott vs H E Atkins, 1920 1/2-1/2
   H E Atkins vs E Hymes, 1898 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   DCA Congress 27th (1899)
   13th DSB Kongress (Hanover) (1902)
   London (1922)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Amsterdam 1899 by Phony Benoni

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Henry Ernest Atkins
Search Google for Henry Ernest Atkins

(born Aug-20-1872, died Jan-31-1955, 82 years old) United Kingdom

[what is this?]
Henry Ernest Atkins was a schoolmaster who treated chess as a hobby, devoting relatively little time to it and playing in only a handful of international tournaments. He was an extremely gifted player who would likely have become one of the world's leading players had he pursued the game more single-mindedly.

Atkins was born on the 20th of August 1872 in Leicester, England. He joined the Leicester Chess Club in 1882. By age 17, he was the champion of Leicester.

He graduated from Cambridge and taught mathematics at Northampton and Wyggeston. In 1909, he was appointed Principal of Huddersfield College.

His record in the British Championship is unparalleled. He played in it 11 times, winning on 9 of those occasions: in 1905, 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1910, 1911, 1924 and 1925. In his first attempt in 1904 he finished 1st= with William Ewart Napier but lost the play-off. In his last appearance in 1937 he was 3rd= at 65 years of age!

Atkins' international career consisted of just six tournaments. In the Hastings 1895 minor tournament he finished 2nd= behind Geza Maroczy. In 1899 he won the Amsterdam tourney by a whopping 4 points with a perfect score of 15/15. In the Hanover 1902 tournament he was 3rd behind David Janowski and Harry Nelson Pillsbury and ahead of Frank James Marshall and Mikhail Chigorin amongst others. He was 10th out of 16 at London 1922 and also represented the British Chess Federation in the Olympiads of 1927 and 1935.

In 1903, a "projected match between Mr. H. E. Atkins and Dr. Olland has, unfortunately, fallen through because, it thought, the latter took exception to the place of meeting fixed by the Netherlands Chess Association." 1

In 1950, FIDE awarded Atkins the International Master title based on his earlier results. He died in Huddersfield in 1955.

Wikipedia article: Henry Ernest Atkins
1 "Exeter and Plymouth Gazette", Tuesday 11th August 1903, p.3.

 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 126  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. G D Madgavkar vs H E Atkins  0-1401892Oxford-CambridgeC62 Ruy Lopez, Old Steinitz Defense
2. E Delmar vs H E Atkins  ½-½4118961st Anglo-American Cable MatchD05 Queen's Pawn Game
3. H E Atkins vs Burn 1-0461897WoodhallA07 King's Indian Attack
4. H E Atkins vs Burille  1-06318972nd Anglo-American Cable MatchA07 King's Indian Attack
5. H E Atkins vs E Hymes  ½-½3618983rd Anglo-American Cable MatchA07 King's Indian Attack
6. Showalter vs H E Atkins  1-04518994th Anglo-American Cable MatchC76 Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense, Fianchetto Variation
7. A van Foreest vs H E Atkins  0-1431899DCA Congress 27thC50 Giuoco Piano
8. H E Atkins vs W Meiners 1-0491899DCA Congress 27thD50 Queen's Gambit Declined
9. H E Atkins vs F W Pelzer  1-0251899DCA Congress 27thD21 Queen's Gambit Accepted
10. J Moquette vs H E Atkins  0-1261899DCA Congress 27thC53 Giuoco Piano
11. H E Atkins vs J W te Kolste 1-0191899DCA Congress 27thD60 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense
12. H E Atkins vs D Bleijkmans  1-0441899DCA Congress 27thA84 Dutch
13. J Dimer vs H E Atkins 0-1211899DCA Congress 27thC55 Two Knights Defense
14. J D Tresling vs H E Atkins 0-1321899DCA Congress 27thC66 Ruy Lopez
15. H E Atkins vs J F Heemskerk  1-0421899DCA Congress 27thD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
16. H E Atkins vs Swiderski  1-0491899DCA Congress 27thD55 Queen's Gambit Declined
17. H E Atkins vs N Mannheimer  1-0281899DCA Congress 27thD55 Queen's Gambit Declined
18. J Partaj vs H E Atkins 0-1201899DCA Congress 27thC66 Ruy Lopez
19. H E Atkins vs W Schwan 1-0241899DCA Congress 27thA84 Dutch
20. Olland vs H E Atkins  0-1601899DCA Congress 27thC66 Ruy Lopez
21. C Trimborn vs H E Atkins 0-1801899DCA Congress 27thE90 King's Indian
22. J F Barry vs H E Atkins  1-03319005th Anglo-American Cable MatchB40 Sicilian
23. E Hymes vs H E Atkins  1-06119016th Anglo-American Cable MatchC77 Ruy Lopez
24. C H Sherrard vs H E Atkins  1-0311902British ChampionshipC42 Petrov Defense
25. Marshall vs H E Atkins 0-13619027th Anglo-American Cable MatchD50 Queen's Gambit Declined
 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 126  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Atkins wins | Atkins loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Aug-09-11  Antiochus: 177 games of Henry Atkins are here:

Jul-14-12  FSR: I am largely responsible for the Wikipedia article on Atkins. A remarkable player, who could have gone very far had he devoted himself to the game.
Jul-15-12  Karpova: Shrewsbury, August 1906, 3rd British Chess Congress

1. H. E. Atkins 8.5
2. R. P. Michell 7.5
3-6. Lee 7.0
3-6. W. C. Palmer 7.0
3-6. Shoosmith 7.0
3-6. G. E. Wainwright 7.0
7. Blackburne 6.5
8. V. Wahltuch 4.5
9. E. Mercer 4.0
10. F. E. Hammond 3.5
11. J. E. Perry 2.0
12. Frank Brown 1.5

Atkins received 60 pounds, Michell 30 pounds.

'(Neue) Wiener Schachzeitung', June 1906, pages 323-324

Premium Chessgames Member
  brankat: No doubt, a very talented player!

R.I.P. master Atkins.

Aug-20-12  Nosnibor: Here is one of the last serious games played by Atkins just before WW2;-White: H E Atkins Black; P Rowland Played 22/04/1939 in a match between Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire at board 1 1e4 e5 2Nf3 Nc6 3Bg5 a6 4Ba4 Nc6 5Nc3 Bb4 6Nd5 Be7 7d3 0-0 8h3 d6 9c4 Nxd5 10c4xd5 Nd4 11Nxd4 exd4 12g4 Bh4 13Bd2 Qe7 14Qe2 b5 15Bb3 Bd7 16Rc1 Ra-c8 17Kd1 Rfe8 18Qf3 c5 19dxc6 Bxc6 20Rc2 Kh8 21Rg1 Qf6 22Qxf6 Bxf6 23Bxf7 Re7 24Bd5 Rec7 25Ba5 Bxd5 26Rxc7 Rxc7 27Bxc7 Bxa2 28Bxd6 Black Resigns 1-0 Happy 140th Mr Atkins
Aug-22-12  Karpova: Scarborough, 1909.08.09 to 1909.08.21, 6th British Chess Congress

1-2. H. E. Atkins 8.5
1-2. J. H. Blake 8.5
3. W. Ward 7.5
4-5. J. H. Blackburne 7.0
4-5. F. D. Yates 7.0
6-7. R. P. Michell 6.0
6-7. G. E. Wainwright 6.0
8. F. J. Lee 5.0
9. Dr. H. Holmes 4.0
10. Herbert Jacobs 3.0
11. A. J. Mackenzie 2.5
12. E. G. Sergeant 1.5

From pages 372-373 of the 1909 'wiener Schachzeitung'

Aug-22-12  Nosnibor: Tunbridge Wells,August 1908.Here Atkins outdistanced the field by one and a half points 1 H E Atkins 8.0
2 W Ward 6.5
3-6 J H Blackburne 6.0
3-6 I Gunsberg 6.0
3-6 F J Lee 6.0
3-6 Rev.W C Palmer 6.0
7-8 R P Michell 5.5
7-8 E G Sergeant 5.5
9 A Shoosmith 5.0
10-11 J H Blake 4.0
10-11 A J Mackenzie 4.0
12 Lean 3.0

From minutes of the Leicestershire Chess Club 1908

Aug-25-12  Karpova: Regarding my post from Aug-22, the 1910 'Wiener Schachzeitung' reports on page 254 the play-off between Atkins and Blake:

4 games should have been played overall but Atkins won game 1 (in 55 moves), game 2 (in 16 moves) and drew game 3 in 45 moves clinching his 5th title.

Aug-25-12  Karpova: Oxford, British Chess Congress started on August 15, 1910 (?). Final Result:

1. Atkins 8.5
2-3. Blackburne 7.5
2-3. Yates 7.5
4-5. Blake 6.5
4-5. Wainwright 6.5
6-7. Colman 5.0
6-7. Hughes 5.0
8-9. Gibson 4.5
8-9. Lewis 4.5
10-11. F. S. Smith 4.0
10-11. Dr. S. F. Smith 4.0
12. Brown 2.5

From page 40 of the 1911 'Wiener Schachzeitung'

Sep-06-12  Nosnibor: <FSR> Apropos your bio on wikipedia you might be interested to know that Atkins in playing for both his club and county in Leicester played 76 games between 1887 and 1939 without losing one.This constituted 36 wins and 40 draws ! His obituary in "The Wyggestonian" said that "As a man Mr.Atkins was of simple habits,very shy and reticent,yet possessing a personality commanding respect and lending an air of distinction to any gathering where he was present".source:Chess in Leicester 1860 -1960
Sep-06-12  Nosnibor: <FSR> With reference to my last post I should have stated the years 1887 to 1941. Atkins played his last county match in September 1941.
Sep-06-12  FSR: <Nosnibor: <FSR> Apropos your bio on wikipedia you might be interested to know that Atkins in playing for both his club and county in Leicester played 76 games between 1887 and 1939 without losing one.This constituted 36 wins and 40 draws !>

Not <that> surprising, IMO. There probably was a wide gap between Atkins (who would surely be a GM by modern standards) and most of his local opponents.

Sep-27-12  Nosnibor: Since my last post on Sept.6 I have discovered that H.E.Atkins did play one more match for his county and this was after WW2 on the 8th December 1945 on board one against Warwickshire when he beat H.C. Lewis.B.H.Wood on board 2 lost to Alfred Lenton in the same match.
Nov-07-12  Conrad93: He won the British Chess Championship seven times in a row!
Mar-20-13  Nosnibor: Apparently Atkins has a boy of 17 beat Blackburne in a blindfold game where the latter was playing 8 games without sight of the board.This took place on the 19th March 1890 and Atkins was the only player to win out of all the contestants.(source"Daily Post" 20 March 1890)Unfortunatly I am unable to trace a record of this game.However I can supply the record of a game played November 1892 by Atkins in his game at board 2 for Cambridge University against the British Chess Club.This was played at the Carlton Club,H.Q. of the University Chess Club.White: H.W.Trenchard,Black:H.E.Atkins,Centre Game.1e4,e5,2d4,exd4,3Qxd4,Nc6,4Qe3.Nf6,5e5.Ng4,- 6Qe4,d5,7exd6+,Be6.8Be2,Nf6.9dxc7,Qxc7,10Qa4,Bc5-
29f3,Bc4,30Kf2,Rxf1+White resigns 1-0
Aug-20-13  FSR: Atkins was strong like bull. Had he devoted himself to chess, he would undoubtedly have been a world-class player.
Aug-20-13  SimonWebbsTiger:

IM Andrew Martin looks at him in the link above.

Jan-21-14  Cemoblanca: He looks like the character Daniel Plainview from "There Will Be Blood" played by Daniel Day-Lewis. ;)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: <"Huddersfield Head to retire>

Nine times chess champion of England

Mr. H. E. Atkins head master of Huddersfield College, but perhaps better known as an international chess player, is to retire at the end of this year, after 22 year's service. He has been nine time chess champion of England

When only 15 he joined Leicester Chess Club, and never lost match for many years. In 1899 he made his first appearance the Continent as an International player, and won every match the tournament in Amsterdam. [1]

From 1906 to 1912 he won the British Championship every year,[2] and played many games for Great Britain against America by cable. In August of last year he represented England an international tournament Warsaw. He has been a member of Huddersfield Chess Club for many years.

Last Monday played 12 opponents at once at the Lindley club's opening night, and won every game. Mr Atkins became head master of Huddersfield College 28 years ago. Before that was a master at Wyggeston School Leicester. He has not decided yet whether be will leave Huddersfield or not during his retirement."

Source: <Yorkshire Evening Post - Wednesday 7th October 1936, page 13.>

[1]. Amsterdam (1899)

[2]. His six victories were:

1905 Southport
1906 Shrewsbury
1907 London
1908 Tunbridge Wells
1909 Scarborough
1910 Oxford
1911 Glasgow

and then twice in a row at

1924 Southport
1925 Stratford on Avon

Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: MR. H. E. ATKINS. The result the match Atkins v. Blake, recently played at Bradford, will very gratifying to Mr. Atkins’ many local and friends For the fifth time in succession he has won the British Championship, and even his detractors (if he has any which is doubtful) must admit that his fine record gives him unassailable title to be considered the strongest player in these islands.

Mr. Atkins was born in 1872 at Leicester, where he as a schoolboy of 12, first became interested chess. Three years later he joined the Leicester Chess Club. and his progress was so rapid that when when he 17 he was playing top board. In 1890 he entered Peterhouse College, Cambridge, and during his four years’ residence there he played a large number of matches, losing only one game.

Mr. Atkins’ excellent performance at Hastings in 1895, where he won his section and finally came out third, Maroczy being first and Lomas second, gave him the title of Amateur British Champion, as first and second man were debarred by nationality from holding that proud position. Four years later, in 1899 Mr. Atkins made his first apperanace in Continental chess at the Amsterdam International Amateur Tournament, where succeeded in defeating every one of his fifteen opponents. Perhaps Mr. Atkins' finest achievement was at Hanover in 1902, where in tournament confined to the world's masters he came out third with 11 1/2 points. Pillsbury (13 1/2) and Janowsky (12).

Below the Englishman were such masters as Mieses, Napier, Tchigorin. Marshall, Gunsberg, Wolff, Bardeleben and Mason. Mr. Atkins has played in nine of the cable matches with America, and can show a score of 4 wins, 3 losses and 2 draws. In the British Chesa Federation Congresss he tied with Napier at Hastings in 1904 and lost the play-off the odd game. Since then, however, he has won the Championship every year with highly commendable regularity. Mr. Atkins' quiet and modest demeanour, combined with gentle geniality, has won him host of friends, and during his residence in Northampton as Mathematical Master at the Grammar School he took so great an interest in local chess that his influence is felt even now. He was greatly missed when left here for the Wyggeston School, Leicester. Now, however, Mr. Atkins is Headmaster of Huddersfield Grammar School, and has become a tower of strength to the local chess club. Happy institution!"

<Source: Northampton Mercury - Friday 14th January 1910, p.11.>

Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: H.E Atkins v R.Blow
British Championship, 1937.
Blackpool, Round 8.

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. cxd5 Nxd5 5. e4 Nxc3 6. bxc3 c5 7. Be3 Bg7 8.Qd2 Qa5 9. Rc1 O-O 10. d5 Rd8 11. Bd3 c4 12. Bxc4 Nc6 13. Bb3 Ne5 14. Ne2 b5 15. O-O Ba6 16. f4 Ng4 17. Bd4 e5 18. dxe6 Rxd4 19. Nxd4 b4 20. cxb4 Qb6 21. Rfd1 Be2 22. exf7+ Kh8 23. h3 Bxd1 24. Rxd1 Nh6 25. Qf2 Rd8 26. e5 Qxb4 27. Ne6 Rxd1+ 28. Bxd1 Qb1 29. Qd4 1-0

<Source: Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer - Thursday 15 July 1937, p.20.>

Jan-31-16  TheFocus: Rest in peace, Henry Atkins.

I lost twenty pounds on your diet, then gained twenty-five of that back.

Jun-15-17  Nosnibor: At the grand old age of 72 Atkins took on 20 opponents in a simultaneous display in October 1944 at the Leicestershire Chess Club. He won 14 of these and drew the remaining 6 games. One of those that drew G E James I played myself in the early 60`s
Jun-15-17  Nosnibor: In view of my last post it would appear that my Morphy link is Morphy-Bird-Blackburne-Atkins-James. Does this count as a link of4 ?
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Henry Ernest Atkins was a player who had most certainly <not> invaded my consciousness to any extent before yesterday. Then I read that some people, a vague collective of shadowy, unnamed individuals, meeting at night in secret, considered him the strongest English player ever. That meeting was years ago.
Nowadays I imagine Adams or Miles or Short would take the laurel and hearty handshake.

So when I read that, I looked the chap up here and on his first page clicked on the DCA Congress 27th (1899) tournament. What a shocker! He scored 15/15!

Obviously it is time for him to begin invading my consciousness.

search thread:   
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
NOTE: You need to pick a username and password to post a reply. Getting your account takes less than a minute, totally anonymous, and 100% free--plus, it entitles you to features otherwise unavailable. Pick your username now and join the chessgames community!
If you already have an account, you should login now.
Please observe our posting guidelines:
  1. No obscene, racist, sexist, or profane language.
  2. No spamming, advertising, or duplicating posts.
  3. No personal attacks against other members.
  4. Nothing in violation of United States law.
  5. No posting personal information of members.
Blow the Whistle See something that violates our rules? Blow the whistle and inform an administrator.

NOTE: Keep all discussion on the topic of this page. This forum is for this specific player and nothing else. If you want to discuss chess in general, or this site, you might try the Kibitzer's Café.
Messages posted by Chessgames members do not necessarily represent the views of, its employees, or sponsors.
Spot an error? Please suggest your correction and help us eliminate database mistakes!

home | about | login | logout | F.A.Q. | your profile | preferences | Premium Membership | Kibitzer's Café | Biographer's Bistro | new kibitzing | chessforums | Tournament Index | Player Directory | Notable Games | World Chess Championships | Opening Explorer | Guess the Move | Game Collections | ChessBookie Game | Chessgames Challenge | Store | privacy notice | contact us
Copyright 2001-2018, Chessgames Services LLC