American Go E-Journal

The pandemic brings about the closing of the birthplace of the American Go Association

Tuesday July 28, 2020

by Roy Laird

In 1935, a German immigrant and a few of his friends met at Chumley’s, a speakeasy in the West Village, and founded The American Go Association. While the AGA lives on, it has sadly come to light that the storied bar, host to many famous Village denizens and others over the years, has succumbed to the pandemic. Click here to see the New York Post story, which includes a wonderful historic photograph of go players there from 1942. (A meeting of The New York Go Club?) I’m pretty sure that Edward Lasker, the immigrant, who was also a noted chess player and the author of Go and Go-Moku, one of the first go books in English, is the gentleman playing the far game. Can’t resist bragging — I lost a game at nine stones to Lasker in the 1970’s when he had arranged for the NYGC to occupy the basement of The Marshall Chess Club. Can anyone out there identify any of the other players in the photograph?