Christmas Series 1905-1936

A. C. White Christmas Series

First published: March 20, 2004

Last Update: February 15, 2010

The popular series ran from 1905 through 1936. Publisher of the series was chess composer and enthusiast Alain Campbell White (1880-1951). A. C. White sent most books of the series to his friends as Christmas gifts. But they were offered for sale, too. The series consists from 44 books on problem chess and one pamphlet from 1912. Most books are hard covers, bound in red cloth with gold lettering, usually written in English, sometimes in German and French and one was partially in Czech. Most books have printed Christmas wish slip by White, usually bound in after a title page. It appears that a part of edition of some books has wish slips and a part does not. Number of copies published of separate volumes is not known. The below books are listed in chronological order.

Used references:

LN - Bibliotheca van der Linde-Niemeijeriana. The Hague, 1955.

Whyld (ed.): Alain Whites Chess Problem Books. Caistor, 1997.

Betts: Chess. An Annotated Bibliography of Works Published in the English Language 1850-1968. Boston, 1974. (for books in English).

1905

1 Mackenzie, A. F.: Chess Lyrics: A Collection of Chess Problems by A. F. Mackenzie 1887-1905. Edited by A. C. White. New York, J. H. Graham, 1905. XCIV + 476 + (4) pages. a) Red cloth. b) Half-morocco. 21,5 cm. LN 2571. Whyld 1. Betts 33-55.

Introduction authors (1861-1905) article Some thoughts on problem matters with samples of his work is followed by 282 of his problems, solutions with notes of various composers. A Christmas wish slip does not appear at that book, its first appearance is at Nr. 2. There are probably 2 binding variations of Mackenzies book - A. C. White offers in the booklet A Price List, and List of Errata, 1905-1911, a cloth copy at US $3, while a half-morocco copy at US $3.50. A Supplement to Chess Lyrics (Prescott, J. H. Graham, 1906, 18 pages numbered as 481-498) contains another 6 problems, errata and indexes but it is not a part of the series. White sent the supplement to book owners for free, the others could buy it for 10 cents in 1911.

2 White, A. C.: Roi accule aux angles. Paris, Numa Preti, 1905. XI + (1) + 224 pages. Red cloth. 16 cm. LN 2572. Whyld 2.

200 problems by various composers with cornered Kings, all with full-page diagrams. Places and dates of first publications of problems are not given. Said to be a print run of 200 copies (Whyld).

1906

3 White, A. C.: Les tours de force sur lechiquier. Paris, Numa Preti, 1906. XL + 223 + 1 blank pages. Red cloth. 16 cm. LN 2576. Whyld 3. Betts 35-1.

232 task two-move problems. Introduction is simultaneously in French and English, the rest of the book is only in French. Index of composers.

1907

4 White, A. C.: Les mille et un mats inverses I-II. (Tome I - Problemes; Tome II - Introductions, Solutions et Tables). Paris, Numa Preti, 1907. Tome I: (510)p.; Tome II: LIX, 1 blank, 231, 1 blank pages. Red cloth. 16,5 cm. LN 2581. Whyld 4. Betts 40-7.

Volume I presents 1001 self-mate problems, mostly 2-, 3- and 4-movers. Volume II consists of an introduction (in French, English and German), solutions and index of composers.

5 White, A. C.: 200 Bauernumwandlungs-Schachaufgaben. Unter Mitwirkung von Max Weiss. Potsdam, A. Stein, 1907. (4?) + II + 112 pages. Green cloth. 20(?) cm. LN 2582. Whyld 5.

200 Pawn-promotion problems. Dates and places of first publication are not given.

1908

6 White, A. C. / Thompson, W. H.: Ceske melodie. Eine Sammlung von 202 Schachaufgaben von Josef Pospisil. Potsdam, A. Stein, 1908. LXXVIII + (2) + 229 + (3 ads.) pages. Pink cloth. 19 cm. LN 2592. Whyld 6. Betts 33-68.

2 unnumbered and 200 numbered problems by Josef Pospisil (1861-1916), mostly 3-movers, all problems are in full-page diagrams. Solutions in the end are in German. A long introduction on Bohemian problem school and Pospisil by B. G. Laws and J. W. Allen in both German and English. Some 25 problems are corrected (and 41 other Pospisils problems are shown) in Ceske melodie II by Zdenek Mach (Praha, 1917). Machs booklet is a sequel, but not part of the Christmas Series.

7 White, A. C. / Henneberger, M.: J. Juchlis Schachprobleme. Bern, Baumann, 1908. Frontisp. + VIII + 91 + (1?) pages. Green cloth. 23 cm. LN 2591. Whyld 7.

Introduction and 54 problems by Joseph Juchli (1847-1905), a few photos.

1909

8 White, A. C.: Memories of my Chess Board. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1909. 115 + (1) pages. Paperback. 25 cm. LN 2599. Whyld 8. Betts 33-84.

50 authors problems, with reminiscences, anecdotes and autobiographical notes. Full-page diagrams. The other 22 authors problems in an appendix are compared with similar problems by other composers.

9 White, A. C.: Knights and Bishops. New York, American Chess Bulletin, 1909. (5) + IV + 111 pages. Red cloth. 17,5 cm. LN 2598. Whyld 9. Betts 31-4.

100 two- or three-movers between 1856-1909, by various composers. The White material apart from King and Pawns consists from Knight(s) and/or Bishop(s).

1910

10 White, A. C.: The White Rooks. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1910. 210 + (6 blank) pages. Red cloth. 17,5 cm. LN 2609. Whyld 10. Betts 31-5.

274 problems by 114 composers with white Rook(s) in the main role. 100 problems are in full-page diagrams. Index of composers.

1911

11 White, A. C.: More White Rooks. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1911. 220 + (4 blank) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2614. Whyld 11. Betts 31-6.

A sequel to Nr 10, with 400 more Rook problems, 100 of them in big diagrams. Index of composers.

12 White, A. C.: First Steps in the Classification of Two-Movers. Leeds, Whitehead and Miller, 1911. XII + 96 pages. Paperback. 22 cm. LN 2613. Whyld 12. Betts 35-2.

The need for problem classification, history, development of themes, methods of classification. The 14 themes are illustrated by 150 problems of various composers. Original text was published in 19 articles in the British Chess Magazine from June 1910 through December 1911.

13 White, A. C.: Running the Gauntlet. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1911. 269 + (3 blank) pages. Red cloth. 18 cm. LN 2615. Whyld 13. Betts 31-7.

On en passant capture in chess problems, material sorted into 6 chapters. Together 394 problems, of which 100 is in full-page diagram. Introduction is mainly historical, in both English and German, remaining text in English. Index of composers.

14 Palkoska, E. / White, A. C.: Schachprobleme. Weiss: Dame und ein Laufer. Unter Mitwirkung von H. Staerker. Leipzig, Veit, 1911. XVI + 176 pages. Paperback. 22 cm. LN 2612. Whyld 14.

Palkoskas introduction to the theme and 600 problems by various authors, sorted by motifs. White material is limited to King, Queen and Bishop, usually with Pawns, too.

1912

15 White, A. C.: The Theory of Pawn Promotion. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1912. 237 + (11) pages + Errata slip. Red cloth. 22 cm. LN 2618. Whyld 15. Betts 31-8.

Historical introduction with 38 examples is followed by 504 problems, sorted by types of promotion. 100 problems are in full-page diagrams. Index of composers in the end.

(White, A. C.): A Price List, and List of Errata, 1905-1911. (Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1912). (12) pages. Stapled pamphlet. 18 cm. LN 79. Whyld: unnumbered item. Betts 30-10.

In the first part are offered 18 items - besides this booklet and 15 books of the series also 2 other items: Supplement to Chess Lyrics (Prescott, 1906), and The Caduceus (Norwich, 1910), by Keeble. Pages 7-12 show the list of both misprints and real mistakes. This pamphlet is considered as a part of the Christmas Series, however it is not numbered in various lists (Whyld). There is no wish slip for this booklet.

1913

16 White, A. C.: Sam Loyd and his Chess Problems. Leeds, Whitehead and Miller, 1913. 471 + (1?) pages. Red cloth. 24 cm. LN 2629. Whyld 16. Betts 33-50.

Possibly the most popular book of the series contains 744 problems of which 714 problems are by Samuel Loyd and remaining 30 ones by his brothers Thomas (4) and Isaac (26). Also Sam Loyds biography, anecdotes from and about him, puzzles etc. A 12-page supplement to the book was originally published in the Good Companion Chess Problem Club, volume I, August 1914 and then as a separate booklet. The supplement is not part of the series.

17 White, A. C.: White to Play. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1913. 123 + (5 blank) pages. Red cloth. 16 cm. LN 2626. Whyld 17. Betts 35-3.

A Collection of Complete Block Two-Movers. Introduction, 100 problems by various authors, index of composers. Solutions at the end.

18 White, A. C.: Robert Braune. Apotre de la Symetrie. Paris, La Strategie, 1913 (cover dated 1914). Title + 1 leaf portrait (R. Braune) + pp. (3)-40. Green cloth with both original wrappers bound in. 22 cm. LN 2627. Whyld 18. Betts 35-3.

Introduction to the theme and 100 problems by Robert Braune (1845-1924). This book is the scarcest item of the series - most copies of the book (somebody says 500) went down with the Lusitania in May 1915. The book is in green cloth with gold lettering on spine and front cover. Original wrappers are bound in but no softcover copies have been traced. The text was originally published in La Strategie, in January, April, July and October issues for 1913. Same portrait of Robert Braune as in the book was a supplement to 1914 January issue of La Strategie (with light difference in text). The first reference about this book was in January issue of La Strategie for 1914 - a bound copy was offered at 3 Francs.

1914

19 White, A. C.: The White King. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1914. 212 + (4 blank) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2633. Whyld 19. Betts 31-9.

296 problems of various types, by 161 composers, showing the activity of the White King. 100 of problems are in full-page diagrams.

1915

20 White, A. C.: Tasks and Echoes. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1915. 223 + 1 blank pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2636. Whyld 20. Betts 31-10.

The Cumulative principle in Problem Composition. 300 problems sorted into 21 thematic groups. 100 of problems are in full-page diagrams. Index of composers.

21 Dawson, T. R. / Hundsdorfer, W.: Retrograde Analysis. Edited by A. C. White. Leeds, Whitehead and Miller, 1915. 209 + (1?) pages. Paperback. 19 cm. LN 2634. Whyld 21. Betts 39-7.

A total of 200 problems, most of them are by authors - Dawson (68) and Hundsdorfer (28).

1916

22 White, A. C., and others: 100 Chess Problems by William Meredith. Edited by 100 members of the Good Companion Chess Problem Club of Philadelphia, U.S.A. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1916. (4? blank) + (8) + pp.13-224. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2638. Whyld 22. Betts 33-58.

100 problems by William Meredith (1835-1903), mostly 2- and 3-movers, each with notes by different member of the Good Companion Chess Problem Club. Merediths photo as a frontispiece, in text almost 40 photos of chess problemists.

1917

23 White, A. C.: The White Knights. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1917. (2? blank) + (4) + pp.7-134. Red cloth. 16 cm. LN 2644. Whyld 23. Betts 31-11.

100 problems by various composers, White pieces are limited to King, Pawns and Knight(s). Solution in the end.

1918

24 Marble, M. / White, A. C. / Hume, G.: Chess Idylls. A Collection of Problems by Godfrey Heathcote. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1918. (2? blank) + (4) + pp.7-299 + (1?) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2645. Whyld 24. Betts 33-40.

300 problems by Godfrey Heathcote (1870-1952). Mainly 2- and 3-movers, 100 problems are in big diagrams.

1919

25 Hume, G.: A. C. W. Flights of Fancy in the Chess World. Leeds, Whitehead and Miller, 1919. (8) + 158 + (2?) pages. Red cloth. 22,5 cm. LN 2652. Whyld 25. Betts 33-85.

A collection of Whites sketches, mainly humorous, previously published in various periodicals. With 109 problems by White and other composers. Index of authors.

1920

26 Sim, M. / Hume, G. / White, A. C.: D. J. Densmore and the Densmore Memorial Tourney, 1918. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1920. 239 + (1?) pages + 1 plate. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2657. Whyld 26. Betts 33-22.

Biography and 130 problems by D. J. Densmore (1867-1917), in the second part of the book 85 problems from the tournament by various authors. Solutions and index of authors in the end.

1921

27 Henneberger, M.: Alpine Chess. A Collection of Problems by Swiss Composers. Edited by George Hume and Alain C. White. Translated by J. Schumer. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1921. 235 + (5 blank) pages + 7 plates. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2660. Whyld 27. Betts 32-24.

More than 200 problems (100 of them in full-page diagrams) and also a few endgames by 37 Swiss composers. Some biographical notes. Index of composers.

1922

28 Hume, G. / White, A. C.: The Good Companion Two-Mover. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1922. (4 blank) pages + 1 leaf portrait + (4) pages + pp.VII-XX + 418 pages + (2 blank) pages + 10 plates. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2670. Whyld 28. Betts 36-5.

Altogether 912 problems by 174 members of the Good Companion Chess Problem Club of Philadelphia (the club had over 600 members worldwide). The problems explain 175 problem terms and were originally published in the club magazine 1913-1921. Index of composers, general index.

1923

29 Havel, M.: Bohemian Garnets. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1923. (2 blank) pages + 1 leaf portrait + (8) pages + pp.11-221 + (1) page + (2 blank) pages. Red cloth. 22 cm. LN 2675. Whyld 29. Betts 33-37.

500 chronologically arranged problems by Miroslav Havel (1881-1958, real name Miroslav Kostal), 100 problems are in full-page diagrams. Introduction by Frantisek Dedrle.

1924

30 Feast, F. B. / White, A. C.: Simple Two-Move Themes. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1924. XIV + 218 pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2687. Whyld 30. Betts 35-5.

Altogether 600 problems by various authors explaining 100 themes in two-movers (1 theme is illustrated by 6 problems). Index of composers, general index.

1925

31 Hume, G.: Changing Fashions. 150 Chess Problems by George Hume. Edited by A. C. White. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1925. (2 blank) pages + 1 leaf portrait + (4) pages + pp.7-208. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2697. Whyld 31. Betts 33-43.

Most of 150 numbered (and 1 unnumbered) problems by George Hume (1862-1936) are in full-page diagrams. About a half are self-mates.

1926

32 Weenink, H.: The Chess Problem. Edited by George Hume and Alain C. White. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1926. (4 blank) pages + 1 leaf portrait + (4) pages + pp.9-316 + (2) pages + (2 blank) pages + 32 unnumbered leaves with 35 photos. Red cloth. 22 cm. LN 2665. Whyld 32. Betts 30-19.

Revised translation of the original Dutch edition Gouda 1921. In two parts: 1) Historical development of the chess problem; 2) Birds eye view of problem themes. Altogether 374 problems. Index of composers (ca 1,000 with dates and places birth and dead), general index.

1927

33 Dedrle, F.: Echo. Praha, chess club Dobrusky, 1927. Frontisp. (A. C. White) + (4) + LXV + (7) + 134 + (2) pages. a) red cloth. b) purple softcover. 25 cm. LN 2702. Whyld 33. Betts 31-13.

The book begin with 2 articles by M. Havel and F. Dedrle, each written in Czech, English and German. Follow 674 problems on the theme, in Czech notation, classified according to the nature of mates. Index of composers. The softcover edition (which almost does not appear in the market) has in addition 2 blank leaves before frontispiece.

34 Dawson, T. R. / Pauly, W.: Asymmetry. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1927. 154 + (2 blank) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2701. Whyld 34. Betts 31-12.

Foreword and 100 asymmetric problems (those having symmetrical starting position and asymmetrical solution). Solution with 25 more problems in the end.

1928

35 White, A. C.: The Properties of Castling. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1928. 129 + (7 blank) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2715. Whyld 35. Betts 31-14.

100 numbered (+1 unnumbered in frontispiece) problems of various authors, each with a castling element. Index of composers.

1929

36 Palatz, F. / Mongredien, A. W.: Antiform. Berlin, Josef Bergruen, 1929. 252 pages + Errata slip. Red cloth. 23,5 cm. LN 2723. Whyld 36. Betts 31-15.

Text in 12 chapters, first in English and then in German, is followed by 151 problems of various authors.

37 Wurzburg, O. / White, A. C. / Hume, G.: The Golden Argosy: 600 Chess Problems by W. A. Shinkman. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1929. 287 + (1) pages. Red cloth. 22,5 cm. LN 2727. Whyld 37. Betts 33-78.

672 problems of various types by W. A. Shinkman (1847-1933).

1930

38 White, A. C. / Hume, G.: Valves and Bi-Valves. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1930. 176 pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2735. Whyld 38. Betts 31-16.

124 problems by various authors, all in full-page diagrams. About 20 more problems are within solutions, foreword and one as a frontispiece. Index of composers.

1931

39 White, A. C.: Problems by my Friends. Edited by George Hume and L. H. Jokisch. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1931. 251 + (1?) pages + 7 plates. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2742. Whyld 39. Betts 32-30.

A selection of 185 problems of various types dedicated to Alain C. White on his 50th birthday in 1930. Besides 7 portraits of composers there is one more photo of A. C. White in frontispiece (so ACW has 2 photos in the book). Index of composers.

1932

40 Kipping, C. S.: The Chessmen Speak. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1932. (2 blank) pages + 1 leaf portrait + (4) pages + pp.7-(180). Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2745. Whyld 40. Betts 38-5.

A collection of 147 three-movers by C. S. Kipping (1891-1964). George Hume wrote introduction and notes to solutions.

1933

41 Keeble, J.: An English Bohemian: A Tribute to B. G. Laws. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur, 1933. 175 + (1) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2749. Whyld 41. Betts 33-46.

113 problems of various types by B. G. Laws (1861-1931). Solutions in the end, with editors notes.

1934

42 Sola, P.: Suomi. A Collection of Problems by Finnish Composers. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur Depot, 1934. 140 + (1) + (3 blank) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2764. Whyld 42. Betts 32-31.

150 problems, solutions in the end. Indexes of composers and problems.

1935

43 White, A. C.: Conspiracy. A Selection of Help-Mate Problems. Edited by George Hume. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur Depot, 1935. 117 + (1?) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2773. Whyld 43. Betts 39-14.

100 self-mates, all in full-page diagrams. Index of composers.

1936

44 White, A. C.: A Genius of the Two-Mover. A Selection of Problems by Comins Mansfield. Stroud, Office of The Chess Amateur Depot, 1936. 118 + (1) + (1 blank) pages. Red cloth. 19 cm. LN 2790. Whyld 44. Betts 37-9.

114 two-movers by C. Mansfield (1896-1984). Title page says: 32nd and Final Year of the Christmas Series.