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Jerome B Hanken
Number of games in database: 118
Years covered: 1957 to 2009
Last FIDE rating: 1994
Highest rating achieved in database: 2200
Overall record: +29 -72 =17 (31.8%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

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B06 Robatsch (25 games)
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A30 English, Symmetrical (6 games)
A36 English (6 games)
A44 Old Benoni Defense (5 games)
A40 Queen's Pawn Game (3 games)

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(born Oct-30-1934, died Oct-01-2009, 74 years old) United States of America

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Jerome Bernard "Jerry" Hanken was born in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was an Original Life Master who remained an active player until the end of his life. He won the 1964 California Open. Hanken was also a powerful and influential voice in USCF politics and governance. He was a member of the USCF Policy Board for a total of 10 years between 1978 and 1994. In later life, he carved out yet another niche as a journalist, preparing colorful and extensive reports on most major tournaments in the United States.

Last updated: 2022-11-19 11:02:15

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 page 1 of 5; games 1-25 of 118  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. J Hanken vs Santasiere 0-137195758th US OpenD93 Grunfeld, with Bf4 & e3
2. J Hanken vs J F Donovan 0-123195758th US OpenD24 Queen's Gambit Accepted
3. J Hanken vs A W Bourke  1-031196162nd US OpenA08 King's Indian Attack
4. J Hanken vs H A Buczko  1-027196162nd US OpenA06 Reti Opening
5. J Blackstone vs J Hanken  0-122196162nd US OpenB98 Sicilian, Najdorf
6. J Hanken vs T Weinberger 0-1421962Herman Steiner Club ChampionshipA00 Uncommon Opening
7. J Hanken vs T Weinberger 0-1361963Santa MonicaA00 Uncommon Opening
8. J Hanken vs Benko  ½-½46196364th US OpenA04 Reti Opening
9. T Weinberger vs J Hanken  ½-½331964California OpenA43 Old Benoni
10. J Hanken vs E Sweetman  1-034196667th US OpenA04 Reti Opening
11. Benko vs J Hanken  1-025196667th US OpenE20 Nimzo-Indian
12. R Holzinger vs J Hanken  1-038196667th US OpenA44 Old Benoni Defense
13. J Hanken vs W Lyons  1-030196667th US OpenA13 English
14. J Hanken vs Browne  ½-½44196667th US OpenA05 Reti Opening
15. J Hanken vs L Day  0-136197071st US OpenA04 Reti Opening
16. J Romero vs J Hanken  0-140197172nd US OpenB23 Sicilian, Closed
17. J Hanken vs A Saidy  ½-½15197172nd US OpenD34 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch
18. J Hanken vs R Stoutenborough  0-136197172nd US OpenA07 King's Indian Attack
19. J Hanken vs E Formanek  0-133197172nd US OpenA04 Reti Opening
20. J Hanken vs Dake 0-1251973Lone PineA04 Reti Opening
21. R Wilcox vs J Hanken  1-0291973Lone PineB06 Robatsch
22. C Barnes vs J Hanken  ½-½331973Lone PineB00 Uncommon King's Pawn Opening
23. Lombardy vs J Hanken  ½-½42197475th US OpenB06 Robatsch
24. J Hanken vs T Weinberger 1-0771976HollywoodA00 Uncommon Opening
25. J Hanken vs R Chess 1-044197778th US OpenA04 Reti Opening
 page 1 of 5; games 1-25 of 118  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Hanken wins | Hanken loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Oct-02-09  wolfmaster: RIP Jerry.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni:
Oct-03-09  AnalyzeThis: Sorry to hear this. Played him once at the US open, got a draw. Nice enough to me.
Oct-03-09  whiskeyrebel: What a nice guy Jerry was. We played at the 2006 National open. Before the game I told him I grew up on his tournament reports and was proud to actually sit down and face him over the board. Even though he probably heard that sort of compliment hundreds of times, he smiled and thanked me and then lowered his voice and asked me barely above a whisper.."if you like my stuff, can you please write in and tell 'em?". I talked with him many times after that including at the U.S. open in 2008. Considering how so many players become jaded with time, I'll never forget how generous he was with his praise for other players at the end of his playing career. He told me that he loved the fact that even the lowest rated players could present a threat, you can't overlook anybody. What a great attitude. RIP sir.
Oct-10-09  eightsquare: Happy Birthday Jerome B Hanken!!
Oct-14-09  wolfmaster: Too bad he can't enjoy it.
Jan-02-12  wordfunph: "Young man, when you turned down my draw
offer like that, it was an insult to my manlihood!"

- Jerry Hanken (to his opponent Jonathan Hilton in 2004 King's Island Open)

Source: Chess Life January 2012

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: "Manhood" or "manlihood"?
Premium Chessgames Member
  SteinitzLives: One time at the U.S. Open, Jerry jumped into the hotel swimming pool, doing a cannonball. As dutiful judges we began to give him the particular numbers we thought his cannonball warranted. 9, 8, 8.5, the last gave him only a 6.5, we looked at him questioningly, he said firmly: "on the Richter scale". ba da bing!
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Photo of Hanken (at right) playing against Vasik G. Rajlich at the 1999 World Open:

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Attention Wikipedia Editors! In the article on the Lone Pine tournaments,, one of the references has the author "Jerome B Hankins".

I think we know who that actually is.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Phony Benoni> Fixed another: 'Louis B Stratham'.
Jun-29-13  UnsoundHero: Jerry played in at least 20 straight US Opens. It seemed like he never missed a year.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <UnsoundHero> The streak probably reached the neighborhood of 40. When I quit after 1999, I had 25 straight and he had a longer streak even then.
Jun-29-13  DoctorD: I liked Jerry's early writings (eg.,"Parting with the Lady") more than his tournament reports, although the ones toward the end of his career were more interesting and less "cutesy" - just my opinion. His early reports seemed to polarize the CL readership; people either loved 'em or hated 'em.
Premium Chessgames Member
  cwcarlson: No one who knew Jerry will forget him. He played in the American Open 45 (?) times, which must be a record. In his prime he was about 2200 strength.
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: I've met Mr. Hanken a few time, at National Open and at American Open (which may not exist anymore, LAX Thanksgiving Weekend, 8 round Swiss, run by Randall Hough).

I regret that I never took a photo to submit to CG.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <DoctorD> Jerry was a polarizing individual, not afraid to speak his mind and take the resulting flak. And there was plenty of it.

At the US Open, he would usually write a short feature called "Hanken's Corner" that would be printed in the daily bulletin. (I don't know what he generally charged, but the time I dealt with him the price was a free copy of the bulletins.)

One year the bulletins were produced by one of his enemies, who not only would not accept the column but refused to print any of Hanken's games, even his losses.

Jun-30-13  DoctorD: There are lots of interesting stories about Jerry and certainly the good he did outweighed the bad. But he could fly off the handle. I remember when he became quite outraged at the title of a CLO article, "The Only Good Indian..."(on the Indian problem theme, but certainly an unfortunate title).
Premium Chessgames Member
  cwcarlson: JH had a temper and was sometimes pushy. At the 1977 American Open (just before a round was starting) he got into a fist fight with a guy named Glikman (?). If I remember correctly, JH told G he couldn't smoke at the board and G told him where to shove it. They got up from their boards into the aisle where G told JH to 'make a move.' JH did, and got knocked down twice despite being several inches taller! People talked about it for years. It wasn't another Hagler - Hearns 1985, but had it been on Pay Per View they would have gotten rich!
Jul-01-13  Dionysius1: Hi <cwcarlson>. Great story. Do you remember who won the chess game?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <Dionysius1> You are a True Chess Player!
Premium Chessgames Member
  cwcarlson: JH and G weren't playing each other. They were on adjacent boards on opposite sides of the table. I don't remember who either played or how they did. After JH picked himself up off the floor GM Lein came up to John Peters with a big smile on his face and said,"You see Hanken?" He then bounced around punching his fists in the air. It would have been a great Youtube video.
Mar-18-15  zanzibar: From

< ›
Hanken's Lemon (or nuts)
2 posts by 2 authors


I just returned from the 1997 U.S. Open in Orlando, Florida. One of the players in the tournament was blind, using a smaller wooden set over which he ran his hands to determine the location of the pieces. Several handicapped players also chose to play in the tournament, some of whom have lost the use of their legs.

My roommate bought the tournament bulletins in the USCF Bookstore, which featured a column titled "Hanken's Corner by Jerry Hanken." After Round 2, Mr. Hanken wrote, in part, as follows:

<"Y.H.R. [Your Humble Reporter] suffered a major derailment last night in the Quest for the Holy Grail of 30 straight U.W. Open plus scores. I lost to 10 year old Cory Evans, the bright off-spring of IM Larry D. Evans. (The NICE Larry Evans). Cory played a very impressive attack. This was on top of two losses to the Saitek Milano Pro. Let's see now. I lost to a computer and a child. This leaves a blind guy, a handicapped person and a couple of women, one Jr. and one senior. (I think that's the Grand Slam!) OOPS!! Am I going to catch it from the P.C. Crowd!">

Although I don't consider myself a member of the "P.C. Crowd," I was absolutely horrified when I read this passage. What do you think netters, was Hanken over the line, or did he merely engage in colorful writing?

On a more humorous note, in one of the later rounds Mr. Hanken sat on my immediate right. I debated myself as to whether to mention to him that I felt his written comments were over the line, and I decided not to. Mr. Hanken brought a container of nuts to his game, which he proceeed to eat as soon as the round had begun. I ignored the open mouthed loud crunching of Mr. Hanken. Debris from the nuts was falling from Mr. Hanken's mouth to the front of his shirt, his side of the table, and onto his board. (I am not making this up). When the nut debris had grown to considerable levels, he began a vigorous sweeping of the debris to his immediate left. I flinched as Mr. Hanken's nut debris hit my bare right arm, which ellicited a "Oh, ... sorry," from Mr. Hanken.

And finally, on a more mysterious note, I heard a rumor that Coke was considering some type of sponsoring relationship with the U.S.C.F., and that Mr. Hanken was solely responsibile for derailing the arrangement. Any netters know anything about this rumor?>!s...

Premium Chessgames Member
  WTHarvey: Here are some mates and combinations from Jerry's games: Find the winning moves.
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