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  1. Arvipa

    Nice collection 🙂

    Regarding Kenya set. I’ve got a rather same as yours, bought there in 1997.

    Abagusii means people from Mogusii. Mogusii was a leader of the Gusii’s tribe at late 18th century.

    Soapstone (Steatite) is mined in Tabaka in open pit mine.

    GPS: / 0°45’36.9″S 34°39’36.4″E / -0.760261, 34.660103)

    1. jvreij

      Hello Arvipa
      Thank you very much for this additional information.
      In meantime I discovered that “Kisii” is the Swahili name that the British colonial administration used, and it is still the common name used by other inhabitants of Kenya.

  2. Wendy Damink


    Heb dit Perahera Schaakspel ruim dertig jaar in mijn bezit.
    Heeft u enige indicatie van de eventuele waarde ervan?
    Dank alvast voor het lezen en uw hulp!


  3. David Glassman

    Hello there everyone,
    I am seeking assistance in identifying a mid-century African (probably Makonde) wood chess set. I inherited the set from my father. I seem to recall him telling me that it was Makonde from the 1960s.
    Almost 15 years after my father’s death, I am now looking to identify the set conclusively, in regards to where it is from and how old it may be.
    Would it be possible for me to upload a few images of the set to this forum, in the hope that someone may be able to assist?
    Thank you in advance for your kind attention to this matter,
    David Glassman

  4. Porat

    He got it from an outdoor antique market and has no further information. It came in a box, which is definitely from 1906, but there is no indication that the set came in such a box (hand-carved, hand-painted with floral motifs). The sets it relates to are all mid-19th century. I assume then that it is mid-late 19th perhaps even turn of century, like the box. It is very small – 65mm king.

  5. Porat

    Here is a set, recently acquired from a seller in Hamburg, which seems to combine German Regency and German Toy styles. I am referring to your first German Toy set and your first German/Austrian Regency set. Have you come across such a hybrid before?

  6. Josh Ryan

    I don’t know if you realize that the second of your Washington sets is almost exactly identical to Washington’s actual set. It certainly looks like it was made by the same craftsman, since some very subtle details are exactly the same. Washington’s set was lent to the the World Chess Hall of Fame a few years ago by a descendant of Washington. It has stayed in the family since 1780. I have attached a pair of pictures of the set from the World Chess Hall of Fame article. The article is still posted on their website.

    1. jvreij

      Hello Josh
      Thank you for your comment and the picture.
      Indeed I was aware of the similarities but there are also some subtle differences: a.o. shape of (stems of) bishops and pawns.
      But sets of these period are all made by hand and no 2 one are the same. Unfortunately I do not know the maker.

  7. Rob

    Nog even nadenkend……. als je het format van de ¨post here¨ functie gebruikt waarbij je de mogelijkheid biedt om foto’s of documents bij te voegen ? Dan heb je ook een vorm van vraagbaak waarop mensen kunnen reageren.

  8. Rob

    Hallo Joost,

    Mooi opgezet. Leuke foto’s en teksten.

    Mis nog een vragenbank waar je een foto van een gevonden set kunt uploaden onder het mom van: wie weet wat dit is, waar het vandaan komt etc.

    1. jvreij

      Hallo Rob
      Jouw suggestie voor een vragenbank vind ik geweldig, maar ik heb geen idee hoe ik dat zou kunnen realiseren.
      Heb jij een idee hoe ik dat zou kunnen? De site is in WordPress en een aantal plugins.

  9. Evan B

    Very nice site detailing the history of chess sets. I have a set of stone figurines that I can’t quite place the origin based on the photos. They are definitely done in soapstone (Kisili?). Is there a way to post a photo or an e-mail address that I could send a photo onto you ? There currently is no option for uploading files or photos for others to see.

    I am currently based in Amsterdam and picked up the set at a local antique store in the Utrecht area about 3 years ago.

  10. Radu Ciumara

    Dear Schaak-Museum,
    Your posting about the Austrian “Vienna coffeehouse” chess sets ( helped me identify my own “Vienna coffeehouse” set that has been in my family for about a century. It is the ‘very rare’ model with urns on the bishops.
    The pieces are not weighted, they are probably made of boxwood or fruit-wood (pear or cherry) and have only a thin paper-like felt. I also have the chess table which is the original one. The king stands up at about 3.5 inch (or 8.4-8.7 cm).
    I would gladly share with you the pictures of my set but I don’t know how to attach them.
    Thank you and best regards,
    (Bucharest, Romania)

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