Arthur Feuerstein, Chess Player With Gambit Returns, Dies at 86

Because of his desire to be closer to his brother, Harry, who is over 16, Mr. Feuerstein learned chess when he was 14; he saw his brother playing with his friends.

He became enamored with the game. He quickly organized a chess club at William Howard Taft High School and began challenging other schools to matches. After graduating in 1953, he went to Baruch College in Manhattan, where he received a business degree. During his time he competed in local leagues whenever he could.

It was the heyday of gaming in the United States, especially in New York City, which nurtured a generation of future stars. Among them was William Lombardy, who won the 1957 junior world championship with the only perfect score in the tournament’s history; the Byrne brothers, one of whom, Robert, later became a world championship contender and chess columnist for The New York Times; and Bobby Fischer, the most extraordinary talent.

Mr. Feuerstein may have been lost or overwhelmed in such a company, but he has wielded power of his own.

At the 1956 United States Junior Championships, he finished third, behind Mr. Fischer. He then overcame Mr. Fischer to win the United States Junior Blitz Championship, where each player had five minutes for the entire match.

The Third Rosenwald Prize, which took place in October 1956 at the Manhattan Chess Club, is often remembered for Mr. Fischer’s remarkable victory over Donald Byrne, Robert’s younger brother. But Mr. Fischer finished in eighth place, while Mr. Feuerstein came in third – just behind Arthur Bisguier, another New York prodigy who had won the US championship two years earlier.

Then, in the 1957-58 championship, Feuerstein finished sixth with Arnold Denker, a former champion, and Edmar Mednis, a future grandmaster. Fischer, then 14 years old, won the championship, beating Brother Feuerstein for the first and only time. During his career, Mr. Feuerstein had a record of one win, one loss and three draws with Mr. Fischer. Arthur Feuerstein, Chess Player With Gambit Returns, Dies at 86

Fry Electronics Team

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