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Frederick Deacon
Number of games in database: 67
Years covered: 1849 to 1864
Overall record: +38 -24 =5 (60.4%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

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C33 King's Gambit Accepted (5 games)
C52 Evans Gambit (4 games)
C51 Evans Gambit (4 games)
B27 Sicilian (4 games)
B21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4 (4 games)
C41 Philidor Defense (3 games)
B40 Sicilian (3 games)
C40 King's Knight Opening (3 games)
C00 French Defense (3 games)
C39 King's Gambit Accepted (3 games)

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(born 1830, died Nov-20-1875, 45 years old) United Kingdom (federation/nationality Belgium)

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Wikipedia article: Frederick Deacon

Last updated: 2018-05-11 11:38:21

 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 67  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Remioulle vs F Deacon 0-1221849Casual gameC40 King's Knight Opening
2. F Deacon vs Remioulle  1-0361849Casual gameC41 Philidor Defense
3. F Deacon vs A Alexandre 1-0361850Casual gameC24 Bishop's Opening
4. F Deacon vs E Lowe  1-0341851Deacon - Lowe MatchA03 Bird's Opening
5. E Lowe vs F Deacon 1-0371851Deacon - Lowe MatchB40 Sicilian
6. F Deacon vs F R Drew 0-1571851Casual gameC41 Philidor Defense
7. F Deacon vs E Lowe  1-0311851Deacon - Lowe MatchA30 English, Symmetrical
8. Anderssen vs F Deacon  0-1321851Odds game000 Chess variants
9. E Lowe vs F Deacon  ½-½621851Deacon - Lowe MatchB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
10. F Deacon vs E Lowe 1-0491851Deacon - Lowe MatchA20 English
11. E Lowe vs F Deacon 1-0371851Deacon - Lowe MatchC00 French Defense
12. F Deacon vs E Lowe  1-0511851Deacon - Lowe MatchC44 King's Pawn Game
13. E Lowe vs F Deacon  0-1351851Deacon - Lowe MatchC00 French Defense
14. E Lowe vs F Deacon 0-1281851Deacon - Lowe MatchB40 Sicilian
15. F Deacon vs E Lowe  1-0251851Deacon - Lowe MatchD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
16. F Deacon vs Anderssen 0-1381851London Chess Club tA02 Bird's Opening
17. F Deacon vs E Lowe  1-0451851London Chess Club tA20 English
18. F Deacon vs W Gilby  0-1341851Provincial tA34 English, Symmetrical
19. C E Ranken vs F Deacon 1-0611851Provincial tD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
20. W Gilby vs F Deacon  0-1301851Provincial tB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
21. F Deacon vs C E Ranken 0-1401851Provincial tA35 English, Symmetrical
22. W Gilby vs F Deacon  0-1271851Provincial tC50 Giuoco Piano
23. Bastin vs F Deacon  0-1331855Casual gameD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
24. F Deacon vs Versteven  1-0241855Casual gameC44 King's Pawn Game
25. F Deacon vs P Michaels 1-0271859Casual gameC33 King's Gambit Accepted
 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 67  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Deacon wins | Deacon loses  

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Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Rather confusing, & blurred texts, but here's some sources:

1830: Declaration dated 9 Sept 1833 that Frederick, the son of Daniel Deacon of Dundee --- and his wife Sarah who was the daughter of George Leighton --- in 11 Vineyard Gardens Middlesex Bookbinder, was born at the house of the said Daniel Deacon in 4 B--- Road ---- in Middlesex on the Twenty Eight day of January 1930 (England & Wales Non-Conformist and Non-Parochial Registers). The birth place 4 B--- Road is preceded by another striked out road.

1851 census: Frederick Deacon, 19 South Lambeth, Head, M, 20, ----- of Ch-- (profession), Belgium British Subject

1852: Fred Deacon, Proprietaire, Windsor (list of aliens on board Chemin de fer Belge from Ostend arriving in Dover on 28 March)

1861 census: Frederick H Deacon, Langley Lane 3 Hale's Place, son, M, 29 (?), Clerk in Manchester Ho (?), Belgium (British S). On the previous page is other family members: Sarah S Rogers, Head, 66, Fundholder, b. in Middlesex Chelsea, George L Deacon, Son, 41, b. in Southwark, Edward E Deacon, 33 (?)

1875: <29 December. The Will of Frederick Horace Deacon formerly of 3 Hale's-place South Lambeth but late of 7 Hardiss-road Cold-Harbour-lane Camberwell both in the County of Surrey who died 20 November 1875 at 37 Vaughan-road Cold-Harbour-lane Brixton in the said County was proved at the Principal Registry by Edward Erasmus Deacon of 19 Denmark-street Camberwell Gentleman the Brother the sole Executor.> (Probate calendar)

1875: Frederick Horace Deacon, 45, 37 Vaughan Road Coldharbor Lane Camberwell, buried 26 Nov 1875 (Norwood Cemetary) (London burials)

A family tree has parents Lewis George Isaacs (which I doubt) and Sarah Sophia Deacon (1795-1864), and no indication he ever married. His mother Sarah died in 1864. More likely the father was Daniel Deacon of Dundee and that he was born in Middlesex 28 Jan 1830.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <----- of Ch--> Am I right to assume the blanks refer to blurred text? Townsend (C.N. 7859) goes with <Writer of Chess> which may also be its earliest use as a euphemism for 'unemployed'.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Yes! It's not exactly blurred, but bad writing. It may well be "Writer of Chess".

NB There was another Frederick Deacon who was a Silversmith in Clerkenwell 1861 and 1871, then said to be born abt 1830 in Finsbury. It could be him in the 1830 source above.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: What was the context or purpose of the 1833 declaration? Any thoughts on why he apparently doesn't show up in the 1871 census?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Umm, it was a Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist or some other birth registration before it was decided in 1837 that it should be a Civil registration of <all> births, marriages, and deaths.

I see now the 1833 record is not him, it's the silversmith. No idea why he's not in 1871 census.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Any sign of his brothers in 1871? Just interested if the family were still in Langley Lane (Kennington/Vauhall) or had migrated toward Brixton/Camberwell. I suppose the family may have broken up after the death of the mother in 1864.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Yes, in 1871 there are two brothers in 19 Denmark St., Lambeth:

George Lewis Deacon, Head, Unmarried, 50, Interest on Shares & Annuity
Edward E Deacon, Brother, Unmarried, 43, Interest on Shares & Annuity

Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: George died in 1883 (Lambeth), and Edward died 4 Feb 1885 (late of 235 Shakespeare-road Brixton, formerly of 19 Denmark Street). A family tree also has a sister Caroline Sophia Deacon b. 1820 d. 1882 in Rotherham, Yorkshire West Riding.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Probably the parents (& the family tree also says so):

There is a marriage in St George, Bloomsbury, Camden, 25 May 1815 between Lewis George Isaacs and Sarah Sophia Deacon.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Hmm, and the family tree also says they married <again> "29 Jun 1826 in the Great Synagogue London. Lewis and Sophia were married in a church in 1815 and later married in a synagogue. As a non Jew in those days Sarah wouldnt have been able to marry Lewis in a synagogue but by 1826 she had obviously converted to the Jewish religion."
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Parish of St Ann, Blackfriars, London, extract from the register book of marriages: Thomas Rogers, widower, and Sarah Sophia Isaacs, widow, married 4 March 1837. Which explains "Sarah S Rogers" in 1861 census. Thomas is a Boot Maker in St Martin in The Fields in 1841. He died in 1845.
Mar-22-21  Z4all: Well, I finally dug up some Steinitz comments on Deacon, though I'm wondering if there's other sources:

All of which, too, reminds us that when the late Mr. Steinitz was on one of his visits to this city in the early '80s, a friend who was present tells us that the Deacon games came up for discussion. "What—Deacon win those parties?" broke In the great Bohemian master. "Nonsense; he has claimed to have won just such a game from me, though I never played any such with him". And then be went on to explain that Deacon had a habit of getting master players to try out certain variations of particular openings with him, testing and retesting sub-variations innumerable, taking back moves ad lib., and the like; and then, lo and behold! reproducing some one line of play that had turned tn favor of his side of the board as a game won from his distinguished adversary! And Steinitz thumped his stick on the pavement and chuckled grandly, as he imparted the new data in relation to the even then somewhat ancient controversy [i.e. the purported Morphy--Deacon games].

The Times-Democrat 1911-09-17 p36

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <How hard would it have been for Staunton to correspond with Morphy about the games? Why the rush to publish them after all, without due diligence and common courtesy?>

Staunton had known Deacon since 1849 via correspondence with the <ILN>, and they would surely have met in person around the London 1851 tournament, if not before. Unless there was strong reason to doubt Deacon's honesty at the time, I don't find it strange that Staunton would have taken him at his word (his account of meeting Morphy was not implausible). I also doubt it was standard practice for chess editors to have to verify the games they published. As for rushing into print, Staunton did actually have a reason - his new book <Chess Praxis> was due out in early 1860, which, as it happens, carried a large section of Morphy games, Staunton being well aware of Morphy's commercial appeal. That the games didn't just appear in one issue of the <ILN> but were immortalised in book form made things doubly awkward. Perhaps if Staunton had publicly conceded the games weren't genuine, there may have been some legal problems in this regard.

Mar-22-21  Z4all: (Seems anything involving Morphy & Staunton gets, err, a little involved)
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <As for the cousin's testimony, well, ILN v38 p237 is this letter...> The date would be more helpful.

The same letter is reproduced in the <Era> of March 10th 1861, p.15.

The <Philadelphia Evening Bulletin> seems to have been the one American publication that didn't reflexively take Morphy's side, but I don't know anything about the paper or the identity of its chess editors.

Mar-23-21  Z4all: <Missy> did you consult the following?

Mar-23-21  Z4all: As far as the <Philadelphia Evening Bulletin>, if it has a Philly connection, Reichhelm is the usual suspect...

C.N. 5785

(Have you encouraged Steve to update the CG CN automation yet?)

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <<Missy> did you consult the following?>

In a word, no. I have a BNA subscription so don't have to sully my hands with Googlebooks and the like, except where necessary, of course.

<As far as the <Philadelphia Evening Bulletin>, if it has a Philly connection, Reichhelm is the usual suspect...>

Thanks. It vaguely rings a bell; I looked into this affair some time ago, but one's memory needs regular stoking.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Why does Wikipedia have his DOB as <January 1829>? <Gaige (1987)> just has <c1829>, but 1830 seems more likely according to the censuses of 1851 and 1861, although even 1831 can't be ruled out.
Mar-23-21  Z4all: Let's fatten up the Gaige mention, courtesy of Herr Winter:

According to Jeremy Gaige’s Chess Personalia (Jefferson, 1987), Frederic H. Deacon was born in Bruges in about 1829 and died, possibly in Brussels, circa October 1875. However, the privately-circulated 1994 edition gave his full name as Frederick Horace Deacon and stated that he was born in Bruges in about 1830 and died in Brixton, London on 20 November 1875. The additional sources specified by Gaige were the death certificate (reporting that Deacon died at the age of 45) and the probate record. >

C.N. 7854

But Townsend did quite a bit more digging:

C.N. 7859

where we find Deacon aging but 7 years over a 10 year census interval.

I have him dying at 56 yo, 46 yo, and also 45 yo - depending. The 56 yo is an outlier, clearly.

Mar-23-21  Z4all: FWIW- Harding gives his dob as 1830.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Harding in the Steinitz book reports that Deacon gave a blindfold display on six boards in April 1863, shortly before his match with Steinitz. Of that I had no idea. Supposedly, none of the games were finished. I’ll have to look up Loewenthal’s report in the <Era>.

Did Deacon completely fall off the map after the Steinitz match as our DB suggests?

Mar-24-21  Z4all: <<Missy> In a word, no. I have a BNA subscription so don't have to sully my hands with Googlebooks and the like, except where necessary, of course.>

One man's sully is another man's bully!

* * * * *

Now that Brexit is complete, I think there should be tariffs on the British sovereign subjects who utilize Google Books (largely populated with scanned books from American Universities and American public libraries). Basically, we have an asymmetrical situation allowing a bunch of freeloaders in who don't reciprocate when it's their turn to host the party(*).

The Dutch and Austrians, with their publicly accessible, and excellent, newspaper online db's are excepted, and welcome. Even the French's publically accessible Gallica resource qualifies (despite the fact that it's in French!).

(*) Note that even Google Book's ILN collection is from American libraries, not British.

* * * * *

RE: Deacon's exodus -

It does appear that he did kinda fall off the face of the chess world. Wonder if the shenanigans with Morphy had anything to do with it? .

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Looking at Deacon's career, he only seems to have been active on the London scene for a total of 5 years - 1851 & 1859-1863. Maybe his mother's death in 1864 put an end to his gallivanting.

I looked up the report on Deacon's blindfold display.

The Era, April 5th 1863, p.12:

<BLACKHEATH CHESS CLUB. - This young Club promises to attain a very high position. The promoters spare no pains to advance the interests of the Society, and there is every prospect of their exertions being well rewarded. On Tuesday last an interesting meeting of the members was held at the Blackheath Hall, when Mr F. Deacon, at the request of the Committee, exhibited his power as a blind-fold player, contesting six games simultaneously. His opponents on the occasion were:- 1, Mr W. S. Gover (the President); 2, Mr George Barber; 3, Mr H. Gover; 4, Mr H. G. Sharp; 5, Mr W. G. Lemon; 6, Mr Robert Hewetson [sp?]. Among the company present were the Rev A. B. Power, Dr Nisbet (Inspector General, R. N.), Mr Graham Stokes, Mr Walter Chinnery (the Hon. Sec.) and Mr Loewenthal. The meeting was graced by the presence of several ladies. The spectators took great interest in Mr Deacon's play, which was undoubtedly conducted with great success, considering that it was his first attempt to play six games at one time. With practice we believe that Mr Deacon will be able to do wonders in this line. The games were not finished during the meeting, but at the close of the play Mr Deacon had winning positions in three games, while in two the positions were about even. Mr Gover, the President, seemed to have a slight advantage on his board. We hear that Mr Deacon has consented to give an exhibition of his blind-fold play at the St. James's Chess Club.>

The date then would have been March 31st. One suspects Deacon's notorious slow-play helps explain why none of the games were concluded. Still, in 1863, playing six boards blindfold was an amazing feat - I can think of only Paulsen, Morphy, Blackburne, Harrwitz, Suhle, Maczuski, probably Kieseritzky, possibly Kolisch.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: The <Era> of December 20th 1863, p.4, carries a report of the AGM of the St. James's Chess Club held on December 12th. It was announced that the club was to arrange a four-board blindfold display with the <well-known> Mr. Deacon.

The following week's issue had a report and a game from the promptly arranged seance:

F Deacon vs W G Ward, 1863

<Mr. Deacon on Saturday, the 19th inst., played four games simultaneously blindfold at the above Club. His antagonists were Mr. W. G. Ward, Mr. H. T. Young, Mr. Baker, and Mr. A. G. Howard. The play lasted four hours, and the result was that Mr. Deacon won three games, while the fourth, by mutual consent with Mr. Howard, was abandoned as a draw. Mr. Deacon conducted his games with great rapidity and accuracy, and excited great admiration among the members and [???]. We have no doubt that with practice Mr. Deacon will be able to conduct a larger number of games with equal facility.>

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