Argentina. This is an interesting "Staunton" set, made for the benefit of the 1939 Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aires, at that time called: "Torneo de las Naciones". The set is named "Magistral" and made of "Fenolit", which is a product of the Bakelite company Malaspina, Ferrari & Cia. The pieces have been made in moulds and seams are clearly visible. Recently (June 2021) I got evidence (on chess.com) that the "Fenolit" sets were actually used in the tournament. But shown pictures in B&W do not give 100% certainty. The pamphlet gives interesting information (see pictures).
- Argentina, Buenos Aires, "Magistral", "Staunton"
- fenolit/bakelite K 9.4; p 5.0
- Box 26.1×17.5×8.9
- Made for Olympiad of Buenos Aires in 1939
Originally above set has a Fenolit box in the form of a big Rook (see last picture). However, this set came in a box of another Argentinian set, named Olimpico King, made between 2000 and 2008 approximately. Actually that set was a replica of the set made by the Campo brothers from 1978 till 1988, designed and manufactured for the occasion of the Chess Olimpics that went to Argentina in 1978. Around 2000 Campo sold the company, tools, or design to what we would call King. There was a great demand for the Olimpic chess set. The King set was 10cm, a bit larger as the Fenolit set of 1939, which explains that the box is a little oversized for my set.
The 1939 Olympiad itself was also remarkable. During the tournament the WWII started and a lot of players did not return to their homeland, like for instance Najdorf. There was a controversial outcome because not all matches were played and got a fixed result. England did withdraw.
Argentina. This wooden set is an abstract set made in a series of 100 in favour of Unicef. The set here is set No. 6. This abstract set may not be meant that much to play with, but more as decorative set. Maybe I will move it to the To Look At pages some day. These sets were sold at the 1978 Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aires.
- Wood K 11.4; p 5.8
- Design by Demetrio Karavokiris, Campana, Argentina
- Modelo Funcional Linea Geometrica, for Unicef, no. 6 of 100 numbered sets