Harry Nelson Pillsbury:
A tall, handsome American from Somerville, Massachusetts, Harry Nelson Pillsbury was an instant chess legend. He learned the moves late at age sixteen, but mastered the game quickly. Although he had no international experience, he gained an invitation to the Hastings Tournament of 1895.
The lineup included the greatest players of the day, including the new World Champion, Emanuel Lasker, the former champion Steinitz, Tarrasch, Burn, Mieses, and many others.
Here is Pillsbury's game against Amos Burn, a memorable attack. Pillsbury won the event, 1/2 point ahead of Tarrasch and a full point ahead of Lasker!
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e3 0-0 6.Nf3 b6 7.Rc1 Bb7 8.cxd5 Nxd5 9.Bxe7 Qxe7 10.Nxd5 Bxd5 11.Bd3 Rc8 12.e4 Bb7 13.0-0 Nd7 14.Qe2 a6 15.Rc3 c6 16.Rfc1 b5 17.Qe3 Rc7 18.Qf4 Rac8 19.e5 c5 Diagram
Here are all of Pillsbury's games at Hastings.
Pillsbury's Chess Career:
Hastings 1895: The Centennial Edition, Sid Packard. The greatest chess tournament off all time was held in the summer of 1895, at the ancient Saxon stronghold of Hastings. This "Grand International Chess Congress" attracted the strongest field of players ever assembled, with Steinitz, Lasker, Tchigorin, Tarrasch and Blackburn all present. The list of entries amounted to a catalog of chess luminaries, including Schlechter, Bird, Teichmann, Gunsberg, and Janowski. The games were exceedingly difficult and hard fought, possibly the severest test of chess mastery ever conducted. Finally, the young American Pillsbury surpassed his dangerous rivals in a thrilling last round finish.