The Checker Maven

Labor Day 2015


Each year we mark Labor Day, the celebration of the men and women who make America what it is --- the workers of our nation. From factory worker to small business owner, from taxi driver to doctor, millions of Americans keep our nation going and help make it strong. We're not ones to make class distinctions; we believe that all honest work is worthy of respect and recognition.

The sketch above is of one of the very first Labor Day celebrations, in New York City way back in 1882.

Often on great American holidays we turn to Tom Wiswell, but today we instead offer a setting by another great American problemist of days gone by, Charles Hefter. Mr. Hefter's settings meet Mr. Wiswell's criteria of being natural, clever, and pleasing. Here's one that's simple in form and challenging in execution.

Black to Play and Win


The position is from a game played about 80 years ago; in the actual event, the game was drawn. Mr. Hefter later showed that Black has a win. Can you find it? Labor away and when your work is done, click on Read More to see the solution and notes.20050904-symbol.gif


6-10 13-9---A 3-7---B 23-18---C 14x23 9-6 7-11 6-2 23-27 2-6 11-15 19-16 27-31 16-11 10-14 6-10 14-18 10x19---D 18-23 19x26 31x22---E 11-7 1-5 7-2 5-9 2-6 9-13 6-9 22-18 9-5 18-14 5-1 13-17 Black Wins---F.

A---19-16 10-15 16-11 (or 16-12) 1-6 Black Wins.

B---Caution! A hasty 3-8 would actually lose: 3-8 9-6 8-11 6-2 11-15 2-6 15x24 6x15 1-6 23-19 24-27 19-16 27-31 16-11 6-9 11-7 9-13 7-2 31-27 2-6 27-32 6-9 White Wins. The Black man on 14 was too vulnerable.

C---9-6 14-18 23x14 10x17 21x14 1x17 Black Wins.

D---White finally regains his man.

E---Now Black has a First Position win, though it will take a while.

F---The rest is by the book.

09/05/15 - Category: Problems - Printer friendly version
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