International Chess Federation
Thursday, 11 Apr 2024 22:05
World Chess Hall of Fame hosts new exhibition "Clash for the Crown”

The World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF), the leading chess cultural center in the country opened “Clash for the Crown: Celebrating Chess Champions," an all-new exhibition on April 11, 2024, which is being held in conjunction with the 100th anniversary celebration of the International Chess Federation (FIDE).
“Clash for the Crown: Celebrating Chess Champions” explores the histories of the World Chess Championship and Women’s World Chess Championship through a display of artifacts from the collection of the WCHOF, FIDE and loans from world chess champions including World’s No. 1 Magnus Carlsen and private lenders.

“‘Clash for the Crown’ is a powerful exhibition set to thrill and delight chess enthusiasts as they experience a century of history-defining moments and milestones across the beloved sport of chess,” said Emily Allred, Curator of the WCHOF. “We are incredibly grateful to have such rich artifacts to include in this first-of-its-kind exhibition.”

The exhibition begins with the 1886 World Chess Championship, held in New York City, Saint Louis, Mo. and New Orleans, La., and won by Wilhelm Steinitz and goes all the way to the present world chess champion, GM Ding Liren.

It also tracks the history of the Women’s World Chess Championship from its first winner, the legendary Vera Menchik who was the first Women's World Champion, to Ju Wenjun, the reigning women’s world chess champion. This exhibition is being held in connection with the 100th anniversary of the founding of FIDE.

To commemorate the 100th anniversary, FIDE has planned various celebrations, including festivals, historical exhibitions, the FIDE 100-year Jubilee Book, global tournaments, an online chess museum featuring rare photos, special publications, iconic event posters and more. The Chess Torch relay, marking FIDE's first century, has already visited Asia and Africa and is set to reach the Americas soon. 

“I am thankful to the WCHOF and Dr. Jeanne Cairns Sinquefield and Rex Sinquefield for organizing this exhibition and taking part in marking the centenary of the birth of FIDE,” said Arkady Dvorkovich, President of FIDE. “We hope this exhibition inspires a deeper appreciation for the history of this great sport and its organization. It stands as a bridge between the past and the future, offering a window into the game's rich heritage and FIDE's profound role in the chess world.”

Displays in the exhibition include an area where visitors can view videos of many of the past world champions and women’s world champions and interactive stations where people can learn about past champions. Programming will include lectures about the history of the World Chess Championship, collaborations with FIDE celebrating their golden anniversary and possible collaborations with current and past champions. Other “Clash for the Crown” highlights will include:

  • Replica of the 2023 World Chess Championship Trophy won by GM Ding Liren, lent by FIDE
  • Amber chess set once owned by World Chess Champion Mikhail Tal and is now owned by World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen
  • Chess set used in game 3 of the 1972 World Chess Championship
  • Women’s World Championship medal won by Women’s World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk
  • Women’s World Chess Championship trophy won by Women’s World Chess Champion Susan Polgar (also the first woman to be inducted into both the U.S. and World Chess Halls of Fame) and dress and scarf worn by her at the closing ceremony of the competition
  • The medal won by Nona Gaprindashvili in the 1975 Women’s World Chess Championship
  • A signed first-day cover from the 1984 Women’s World Chess Championship between Maia Chiburdanidze and Irina Levitina
  • Photos by famed photojournalist Harry Benson CBE from the 2018 World Chess Championship match between Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana and the 1972 World Chess Championship
  • Prototype of the table used in the 1978 World Chess Championship created by Cesar Iligan

Dana Reizniece-Ozola, Deputy Chair of the FIDE Management Board and Willy Iclicki, Chair of FIDE Historical Committee visited the exhibition and were really impressed with various chess artifacts on display.

The exhibition will be on view April 11-January 12, 2025. 

For more information, please visit

About the World Chess Hall of Fame

The World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to building awareness of the cultural and artistic significance of chess. It opened on September 9, 2011, in the Central West End after moving from previous locations in New York, Washington, D.C., and Miami. Housed in a historic 15,900 square-foot residence-turned-business in Saint Louis' Central West End neighborhood, the WCHOF features World Chess Hall of Fame inductees, United States Chess Hall of Fame inductees selected by the U.S. Chess Trust, artifacts from the permanent collection and exhibitions highlighting the great players, historic games and rich cultural history of chess. The WCHOF partners with the Saint Louis Chess Club to provide innovative programming and outreach to local, national and international audiences. For more information, visit and on social: Facebook, Instagram, X (formerly Twitter) and YouTube channels.