Visitors Guide to
World Chess Hall of Fame
4652 Maryland Avenue
St. Louis, MO

Accessible Parking Accessible Interpretive Exhibits Accessible Attraction Accessible Restaurants Nearby Accessible Gift Shop Accessible Restrooms


The World Chess Hall of Fame was the brainchild of Steven Doyle, United States Chess Federation president from 1984 to 1987. The institution was originally known as the U.S. Chess Hall of Fame and opened in 1988 in the basement of the Federation’s then-headquarters in New Windsor, New York. The museum began with a small collection of chess memorabilia and cardboard plaques honoring past grandmasters. In 1992, the U.S. Chess Trust purchased the museum and moved it to Washington D.C. While the museum was in the nation’s capitol its the memorabilia collection grew along with the addition of numerous chess sets and boards and the Hall of Fame was expanded to included U.S. and World inductees.

In the late 1990s, Sidney Samole, former owner of Excalibur Electronics, proposed to move the hall of fame to Miami, where it would be located in a new, multi-million dollar facility rook-shaped building constructed by Excalibur. As General Manager of Fidelity Electronics, Samole conceived of the first chess computer, Chess Challenger 1, in 1977. Although Samole died in 2000, the U.S. Chess Trust accepted the proposal the following year. The institution reopened in 2001 as the World Chess Hall of Fame and Sidney Samole Museum. The museum continued collecting chess sets, books, tournament memorabilia, advertisements, photographs, furniture, medals, trophies, and journals until it closed in 2009.

Due to the vibrancy of Saint Louis and the growing international reputation of the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, it was proposed that the contents of the Miami institution be moved to Saint Louis. Realizing the potential to provide area youth with a vital educational resource, Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield provided seed funding to relocate the institution and renovate its new building. The World Chess Hall of Fame opened in September of 2011 in Saint Louis’ Central West End, a bustling neighborhood located directly across the street from the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis. The World Chess Hall of Fame is housed in a historic three story 15,900 square-foot residence-turned-business and features the U.S. and World Chess Halls of Fame, displays of artifacts from its permanent collection, and temporary exhibitions highlighting the great players, historic games, and a rich cultural history of chess.

The World Chess Hall of Fame collaborates with the Chess Club and Scholastic Center to provide programming, instruction, and outreach to an international audience of novices and experts alike. Rotating exhibitions feature items from the permanent collection and the museum also displays temporary exhibitions. The third floor is home to the plaques of the Hall of Fame members. As of May 2013, there are 19 members of the World Hall of Fame and 52 members of the U.S. Hall of Fame. The U.S. Hall of Fame includes Bobby Fischer, John W. Collins, Larry Evans, Benjamin Franklin, George Koltanowski, Sammy Reshevsky, Paul Morphy, and Arnold Denker. The 16 members in the World Hall of Fame include José Raúl Capablanca, Anatoly Karpov, Garry Kasparov, and Boris Spassky. The site is also home to the Q Boutique - named Saint Louis’ Best Gift Shop 2012 by the Riverfront Times. This shop offers items that can enhance a room, refresh a wardrobe, or tickle the imagination

  Through September 22, 2019
M.C. Escher: Infinite Variations examines the mind-bending, mathematical, and metamorphic works of world-famous graphic artist M.C. Escher. The exhibit features an extensive collection of drawings, mezzotints, lithographs, and woodcuts, which blend and blur constructs inspired by impossible worlds, the intricacies of nature, and the infinity of chess.
Free, donation appreciated
For more information visit the exhibit's webpage

Visiting the World Chess Hall of Fame
     Visiting Hours
Tuesday & Wednesday: 10 am - 5 pm
          Thursday & Friday: 10 am - 6 pm
          Saturday: 10 am - 5 pm
          Sunday: 12 pm - 5 pm
          Monday: Closed
Admission to the World Chess Hall of Fame is free. Donations are appreciated.

Directions: The
World Chess Hall of Fame is located in the Central West End district of St. Louis just northeast of Forest Park. The institution is located two blocks north of Lindell Blvd. and a block east of Kingshighway.

GPS Coordinates
N  38  38.676
W 90  15.654

Learn more about the St. Louis area.

World Chess Hall of Fame - Use the official site of the World Chess Hall of Fame for answers to all the questions you may have.

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