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Samuel Tinsley
Number of games in database: 72
Years covered: 1882 to 1899
Overall record: +22 -40 =10 (37.5%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

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D00 Queen's Pawn Game (11 games)
C10 French (6 games)
D35 Queen's Gambit Declined (6 games)
C00 French Defense (4 games)
B01 Scandinavian (3 games)
C02 French, Advance (3 games)
D30 Queen's Gambit Declined (3 games)
D05 Queen's Pawn Game (3 games)
C42 Petrov Defense (2 games)
A80 Dutch (2 games)

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(born Jan-13-1847, died Feb-26-1903, 56 years old) United Kingdom

[what is this?]
Mr. Samuel Tinsley was a well-known player and chess editor of The Times and the Kentish Mercury. He was born at South Mims, near Shenley, Hertfordshire. Despite the lack of formal education, he and his brothers founded Tinsley Brothers, a publishing firm. Soon, Samuel formed his own company, Samuel Tinsley & Co. in 1872. The business was later sold to F. V. White & Co.

His contemporary, G. E. H. Bellingham, evaluated his play as follows: "Mr. Tinsley furnishes one of the few examples of a really strong player who obtained his strength during middle age. He was admittedly never quite in the first flight, but his games were always highly original and entertaining. He was essentially of the attacking school, and perhaps it was a disregard of caution that prevented his taking higher positions in tournament play."

Tinsley was seventh at Manchester 1890. At Simpson's Divan 1893, he tied for second place with Mason and Teichmann, Blackburne (1st). He also competed at Hastings 1895 and London 1899, albeit with poor results.

On 26 Feb 1903, Tinsley attended a lecture at Lewisham Road Baptist Church and participated in the discussion that followed. When he returned to his seat, he immediately lost consciousness and never regained it. He was buried, after a service at the same church, in Lewisham Cemetery. The pallbearers were his four sons Edward, Samuel, Henry, and Frank Tinsley. Mis-attribution of scores, annotations and problems among the Tinsleys is common in today's databases.

(Source: B.C.M. April 1903)

Wikipedia article: Samuel Tinsley

 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 72  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Mephisto vs Tinsley 1-0281882LondonC57 Two Knights
2. Tinsley vs J Mortimer  1-0631890London Simpson's handicapD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
3. Blackburne vs Tinsley  1-0351890ManchesterC14 French, Classical
4. Tinsley vs L Van Vliet  1-0591890ManchesterA80 Dutch
5. Tinsley vs O C Mueller  1-0431890ManchesterD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
6. Gunsberg vs Tinsley  0-1391890ManchesterC14 French, Classical
7. J Mason vs Tinsley ½-½271890ManchesterA00 Uncommon Opening
8. Tinsley vs Alapin  0-1251890ManchesterD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
9. Mackenzie vs Tinsley  0-1371890ManchesterC02 French, Advance
10. Tinsley vs E Schallopp  1-0321890ManchesterA80 Dutch
11. Tinsley vs W Gunston  1-0421890ManchesterD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
12. E Thorold vs Tinsley 0-1381890ManchesterC00 French Defense
13. Tinsley vs Taubenhaus  0-1281890ManchesterD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
14. Tarrasch vs Tinsley  ½-½281890ManchesterD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
15. Bird vs Tinsley 1-0421891LondonA02 Bird's Opening
16. L Van Vliet vs Tinsley  1-0481891Simpson's DivanC13 French
17. F J Lee vs Tinsley 0-1271891Simpson's DivanC11 French
18. Tinsley vs Bird 1-0521893London ''Black and White''A84 Dutch
19. Blackburne vs Tinsley 1-0501893London ''Black and White''C30 King's Gambit Declined
20. Tinsley vs Teichmann  ½-½621893London ''Black and White''D00 Queen's Pawn Game
21. Tinsley vs J Mason  ½-½241893London ''Black and White''D00 Queen's Pawn Game
22. L Van Vliet vs Tinsley  0-1571893London ''Black and White''B01 Scandinavian
23. Tinsley vs Lasker ½-½421894Simul, 36bC47 Four Knights
24. Tinsley vs J Mieses 0-1331895HastingsD05 Queen's Pawn Game
25. Tinsley vs J Mason 1-0511895HastingsD05 Queen's Pawn Game
 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 72  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Tinsley wins | Tinsley loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Nov-24-04  Minor Piece Activity: Any relation to the famous checkers player?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: Yes, they are related.
Nov-27-04  Minor Piece Activity: I guess that begs the question of how they are related? =D
Nov-27-04  george IV: Nice overall record.
Nov-27-04  WMD: Samuel Tinsley's son, Edward, became well-known as chess columnist of The Times. Winter's A Chess Omnibus carries Cecil Purdy's tribute to him:

"The worst annotator of all time...The management (not chessplayers) took him on, and paid him good money for gibberish over several decades till at long last he died, regretted by none of the many chess-playing readers of The Times in the far-flung outposts of the Empire."

Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Nice overall record.> Consider who he was playing against! Most of the games in the database are from Hastings 1895 and London 1899; Tinsley would have readily admitted that he was out of his depth in either tournament.

At Hastings 1895 he had Pillsbury and Tarrasch in trouble and beat Janowski, although he gives the impression of having studied openings for maybe five minutes in his life...had a sort of anti-genius for obtaining bad bishops. Wonder how his son got the Times job?

Jul-25-07  Caissanist: I believe that Samuel Tinsely was chess columnist before before his son was. When the senior Tinsley died his son was able to convince management to have him take it over.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: The 2 games from 1893 in the database are probably from the tournament held at the Simpson's Divan. This was Tinsley's best result, where he finished =2nd with Mason and Teichmann behind Blackburne.

Source: David Hooper and Kenneth Whyld "Oxford Companion to Chess", 2nd edition, OUP, 1992

Premium Chessgames Member
  amadeus: An article about Marion Tinsley:
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: In 1926 Samuel Tinsley teamed up with Vera Menchik to give a series of chess presentations on BBC radio.
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: So, is he related to the all-time greatest checkers player or not? And if yes, how?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <GrahamClayton: In 1926 Samuel Tinsley teamed up with Vera Menchik to give a series of chess presentations on BBC radio.>

Presumably this would be Edward, since Samuel died in 1903.

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: chess lessons over the radio? Seems difficult, chess being a more visual medium.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <HeMateMe>< chess lessons over the radio? Seems difficult, chess being a more visual medium.>

capablanca's book <Last Lectures> was based on a series of chess lectures and lessons he gave on the radio.

Dec-28-10  Marcelo Bruno: Does someone know which was his death's cause?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: <Marcelo Bruno> I have updated the bio with info from BCM. The precise cause of death is not stated. Generally, "passing out" or fainting is due to loss of blood pressure which is often due to heart disease or an aneurysm (internal bleeding), but there are other reasons and the exact cause of Tinsley's death may not be known.
Mar-26-11  Marcelo Bruno: <Calli> If I am not mistaken, La Stratégie from 1903 comments something about his obituary, but I don't remember what is written there. I took a sudden glance in an exemplar that belongs to São Paulo Chess Club.
Apr-09-11  myschkin: . . .

"The death of <Edward Samuel Tinsley> at the age of 67, at the end of the Worcester Congress, will have come as a great shock to a very large circle of friends and acquaintances. He had suffered a severe illness about a year previously, and had to go into hospital for a serious operation. He however made a good recovery, and his sudden death was quite unexpected. He was born on December 1st, 1869, and was the eldest son of Samuel Tinsley , the wellknown international player, who himself was in charge of the chess column of the Times for a great number of years. E.S. Tinsley on leaving school was apprenticed to the jewelry trade, and later became a traveller. After the death of his father in 1903 he and his two brothers took over the chess work for the Times, and their collaboration continued until 1912, when Edward took full charge. He continued his connection with the jewelry trade until after the outbreak of war in 1914, but a decline in business caused him to seek other employment, and he took charge of one of the clerical branches at Woolwich Arsenal. .."

(source: Obituary, BCM, 1937)

Jul-15-12  Karpova: According to page 101 of the '(Neue) Wiener Schachzeitung' 1903, Tinsley died of a <Herzschlage>, i. e. cardioplegia.
Aug-18-12  Karpova: Again according to to page 101 of the 'Wiener Schachzeitung' 1903, he had a collection 38,000 chess problems. His son took over not only the chess columns but also that great collection.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: The younger Tinsley was not as good an analyst as his father. Nor as good a player.
May-08-13  Cibator: English IM William Winter (no relation to the Chess Omnibus author) also administered a severe pasting to Tinsley junior's capabilities as a chess correspondent, remarking that he'd made the Times column a laughing-stock throughout the chess world.

This was in Winter's memoirs, which were serialised in "Chess" magazine during 1963. His account of how Tinsley got the gig confirms that given by <Caissanist> above.

Jul-03-13  thomastonk: From "The Times", March 2, 1903:

"Mr. SAMUEL TINSLEY, of Lewisham, died suddenly on February 27 of heart failure at the age of 56. Mr Tinsley was speaking at a meeting in connection with the Lewisham-road Baptist Chapel on Thursday evening, in the work of which he was interested. He concluded his remarks, sat down, slipped from the chair to the floor, and died in the vestry almost immediately after removal without regaining conscionsness."

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Samuel Tinsley.
Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: <THE charming chess-column of The Times (Weekly Edition) is well maintaining the high standard of excellence attained in the early days, and few particulars of the chess work of its energetic editor will be read with interest by all devotees of chess.

Mr. Tinsley is native of Hertfordshire, and was born January 13th, 1847. His early days were spent entirely in the fields and woods, so to speak, miming wild among dogs, guns, pheasants, and all sorts of game and wild birds, animals and fishes. To put it mildly, he had no scrap of education, and has been obliged to pick up all he knows since he was suddenly transferred from country fields and woods to the dirt and bustle of London, in 1858. The process has been difficult and expensive, but an even disposition, constant thirst for knowledge and experience of all sorts, and very temperate habits, have kept him ever with the desire to rise up and go forward.

He learnt the moves of chess from younger brother when the real troubles of life began, at the age of about 20. Mr. Tinsley has found it, as many others have done, rather too much of fascination, but still, on the other hand, it has proved solace and welcome and healthful distraction when relief to the mind appeared necessity even of existence.

We do not think his forte is serious play, according to the modern plodding style, and until quite recent years he never played match game. He preferred innumerable skittle games, and played them too freely. He has reason to regret this, and now thinks serious games are in many respects beneficial, especially in regard to the cultivation of good style. He says this, as will be observed, rather against his own predisposition, for the benefit of younger men.

Mr. Tinsley has, however, occasionally played in serious contests, and, rather to his surprise, he beat Müller handsomely in two matches. Mr. Müller had just then come over from Berlin. Mr. Tinsley came out well at the Manchester International, and though unsuccessful in sense through bad luck and literary occupations, he played far better in the Hastings Tournament than hitherto. He came out, by the way, second (tie) in an important tourney, Black and White, 1893 and won second in very good first-class Divan tournament. 1892.

It is no secret, we suppose, that for some three years he has managed all chess matters in connection with The Times, including the now popular column in the weekly edition of that journal. And we may point to the fact that while, well backed up by the wonderful staff of that marvellous journal, the chess has been generally absolutely correct. The Times has, during that period, publish than in all the previous years of its existence. This is great and notable fact.>

"The Chess Bouquet (1897)" p122

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