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Checkers Champion Robert Yates

Checkers Champion
Robert Yates

Checkers champion from 1857 to 1885.

Robert D. Yates was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1857. Robert Yates was a spectacular checkers player, but his playing career was tragically short.

From an early age, Yates found an interest in the sport of checkers and studied the game well. In 1873, at age fifteen, he met the World checkers champion, James Wyllie, who at that time was beginning his first tour of America. Through their initial association, Robert Yates was able to impress the "Herd Laddie" with his checker play; in fact, he left an impression on Wyllie so that a fifty game match for the World title was arranged between champions Wyllie and Yates. Again three years later in 1876 when James Wyllie passed through New York on his return home during the latter part of his tour.

This turned out to be one of the toughest matches in 18th century checker history between two opponents of equal caliber. Everything hinged on the last game because each checkers player had reached an impasse with the score being one win each and forty-seven draws between them after the forty-ninth game was concluded. It was also one of the most famous games in the history of checkers.

During the game, champion Robert Yates got into trouble, but at the same time, Wyllie missed his opportunity at a forced win, which then gave Yates a chance to turn the tables. Robert Yates did just that and won the game, which also resulted in winning the match by the score of two wins to one. Yates became the checkers World Champion at the age of 18.

He was one of the first great American checkers players and the only player to hold the World Championship title during the 19th century. Robert Yates was considered a ‘wonder boy’ in the checker arena.

The following year, in 1877, he successfully defended the title in a fifty game match with Robert Martins. On a winning streak, checkers champion Robert Yates also defeated American champion W. R. Barker in a short match of 10 games. Although negotiations had been begun for a return match with James Wyllie, Yates decided to relinquish the title in 1878 so that he could pursue his medical studies.

Champion Robert Yates graduated as a qualified physician in 1883, and then began his career at the Flatbush Hospital in New York. After a sojourn of two years at the hospital, he accepted a post as ship's physician on the steamship, Scheidam, but on his first voyage in 1885 he succumbed to typhus fever, and later died tragically from the disease. Robert Yates, an aspiring young checker champion, was buried at sea; however, his memory was honored in the following obituary that appeared in the Draughts World Magazine, September of 1885.

Read About - Death of Robert Yates








DeerLake Online Store Items

Wonder Mugs Play checkers online, and enjoy drinking from this cool wonder mug.
When adding hot liquid, the colors of the mug will change, checkers cool.

Checkers is a two-player game, where one player is assigned white-chip checkers and the other red. The aim is to play checkers online, capture all of the other player's checkers or make them impossible to move.

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