“Silent Chess Champions” in Belfast, 1913
By Hugh Dominic W Stiles, on 22 March 2013
The following image and story is from the Belfast Evening Telegraph for Monday 4th August 1913.
A party of twenty deaf mutes, who arrived in Belfast on Friday. The following “conversation” which took place – on paper, of course – between our photographer and one of the company will explain their mission:- “Could you give me a few details as regards your visit?” “We have come to play the Belfast deaf and dumb in a games tournament. We are the holders of the London Federation of Working Men’s Social Clubs’ Chess Challenge Cup. I hear the Belfast Deaf are hot stuff at chess, but I have no doubt we can lick them. I am a Belfast man myself, but I have been away for fourteen years and hardly know the old place. They are giving a party here to-night, and I hope to meet a good many old friends – and see a bit of the town meantime. We are staying here till Monday evening, when we go over to Glasgow on the same errand – to lick them at chess, etc – and then we go on to Edinburgh, also on the same errand, returning to Belfast to-morrow week en route for London.” “How many men compose your team?” “Nine.” “And how many are Irishmen?” “Only myself; the others have never been out of England before. In profession they are analyst, engraver, photographer, saddler, compositor, and bookbinder. The rest are independent.” The names of the group are:_ Back Row – Messrs. J. Hast, F.B. Caulfield, W. Baird (hon. Secretary), G. Howe, J. Longman. Front Row – Messrs. E.T. Gausden, A. Padkin, C.H. Rymer. -. Jones, and H.H. Windsor.
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