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Janowski - Showalter Second Match

Jackson Whipps Showalter4/6(+4 -2 =0)[games]
David Janowski2/6(+2 -4 =0)[games] Chess Event Description
Janowski - Showalter Second Match (1899)

New York, NY, United States; 15 March 1899—20 March 1899

1 2 3 4 5 6 Score ————————————————————————————— Showalter 0 0 1 1 1 1 4 Janowski 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 ————————————————————————————— Format: The best of six games is the victor. Prize: $250 stakes ($125 per side) and a $60 purse.

The Janowski - Showalter First Match (1898) had finished in January 1899. This second match was originally meant to be a series of five games played at the Manhattan Chess Club from March 15-20, 1899, but the players agreed to add a sixth game when the score was tied 2-2. The stakes were $125 per side, with a $60 purse put up by the club and split between the two players.

An outstanding comeback by Showalter after a slow start. The Janowski - Showalter Third Match (1899) soon followed at the Brooklyn Chess Club and lasted into April.

(1) American Chess Magazine, April, 1899.

Original collection: Game Collection: Janowski vs. Showalter Matches, by User: Phony Benoni.

 page 1 of 1; 6 games  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Janowski vs Showalter  1-0331899Janowski - Showalter Second MatchC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
2. Showalter vs Janowski  0-1541899Janowski - Showalter Second MatchB40 Sicilian
3. Janowski vs Showalter 0-1391899Janowski - Showalter Second MatchC12 French, McCutcheon
4. Showalter vs Janowski 1-0541899Janowski - Showalter Second MatchC67 Ruy Lopez
5. Janowski vs Showalter 0-1411899Janowski - Showalter Second MatchD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
6. Showalter vs Janowski  1-0401899Janowski - Showalter Second MatchD00 Queen's Pawn Game
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: It's hard to appreciate what $125 was in 1899 but I know it was about 5 ounces of gold, which in today's prices would be about 7500 bucks.
Aug-01-13  thomastonk: I have read in a British newspapers that Janowski did not take this match serious, because of the time limit of 40 move per hour. I have seen in another British newspaper one game with time information, and that looked like 20 moves per hour. And then, of course, a third British newspaper called this an exhibition match.

I have also tried to find some more original sources in the United States, but without much success.

Aug-01-13  Phony Benoni: <thomastonk> Here is the information I used to compile this and Janowski vs. Showalter Match 3 (1899), from the <American Chess Monthly>, April 1899, p.439:

"Two series of games between J. W. Showalter and D. Janowski, one of six at the Manhattan Chess Club, and one of seven at the Brooklyn Chess Club, afforded the ex-American champion an opportunity to demonstrate to the satisfaction of his admirers that his chess strength, as compared with Janowski's, was not exactly what the result of the big match, which the French master won by 7 to 2, appeared to indicate.

"The Kentuckian went even further than that and came pretty near to squaring accounts for his former decisive defeat. Incidentally, he won both series. The first named was for stakes of $125 a side an a $60 purse hung up by the club, and in the latter the stakes were doubled, the purse being $100. In each case the amount of the purse was divided...

"<Janowski again played his games in a very fast time, and doubtless endangered his chances somewhat by so doing...">

Given the short time frames (six games in six days and seven games in ten days), it may well be more accurate to call these two series "exhibitions" rather than "matches". Given his fast play, Janowski was evidently not giving his best.

I'll search for some information on the time control.

Aug-01-13  Phony Benoni: <thomastonk> I have not found any direct mention of the time control. However, the Brooklyn Standard Union for March 16, 1899, gives the score of the first game with the elapsed time used:

Janowski: 37 min.
Showalter: 1 hr. 50 min.

Since the game lasted 33 moves, the time control could not have been 40 moves in 1 hour, but 20/1 would be possible.

Aug-02-13  thomastonk: <Phony Benoni> Thanks!

The stackes were much lower than in the first match, so ...

But here are some more facts:

The second game lasted until "1 o'clock" as the "Auburn NY Daily Bulletin" wrote.

The reflection times of the fifth game are reportet in the "Newcastle Weekly Courant" of April 8, 1899 (White: Janowski):

after 20 moves: 18 min vs 46 min
after 35 moves: 55 min vs 1 h 45 min
after 40 moves: 1 h 1 min vs 1 h 47 min.

And two quotes: "It must be observed, however, that Janowski attached no importance to these games, and resorted to skittish moves, playing at the rate of 40 per hour." (So, this is not the time limit, but only the speed he played.) "It is obvious from the course of play, which was lively and not uninteresting, that White was not in the humour of take the game seriously." (Probably Gunsberg)

From the "The Bristol Mercury and Daily Post" of April 8, 1899: "Janowski, however, it appears, played very loosely, making risky experiments in the opening of each game."

Again the "The Newcastle Weekly Courant" reported the elapsed times of the sixth game (White: Showalter):

after 20 moves: 55 min vs 33 min
after 40 moves: 1 h 30 min vs 1 h.

Aug-02-13  thomastonk: I forgot the date of the last source: April 22, 1899.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <This second match was originally meant to be a series of five games played at the Manhattan Chess Club from March 15-20, 1899, but the players agreed to add a sixth game when the score was tied 2-2.>

If the match was tied 3-3, would they have made it the best of 8?

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