An overall pleasing Sunday morning

Last Sunday (25/11/2012) the opening of the chess exhibition in Haltern am See took place where I had been invited to by Mrs Eva Masthoff. The background story is easily told.

In the last months, the author and journalist Eva Masthoff as well as her husband Dr. Horstfried Masthoff (founder of the Kulturstiftung Masthoff in Haltern) dealt with the preparation of two book chapters on chess bookplates, and in the course of her research work Mrs Masthoff had contacted me whereupon some e-mails had been exchanged about chess in general and ex libris in particular. Later on I gladly accepted her invitation to the Haltern chess exhibition as (inter alia) it gave me the opportunity to write this pictorial report for our website, and Haltern is only one hour’s drive off from Meerbusch. I am also still grateful to Mrs Masthoff that she had warned me the day before against a starlings' nest box (Starenkasten) on the way into town, maybe otherwise I had fallen into that non-chess trap. (In Germany starlings' nest boxes are preferentially installed on tremendously wide roads with an incomprehensibly low speed limit.)

Arrived at Haltern’s public library, I was cordially received by Mr and Mrs Masthoff, and I could shake quite a lot of hands, also of members of the chess club Königsspringer Haltern 1962 whose 50th anniversary was celebrated with this exhibition. Naturally at the start of the event some short welcoming speeches were given by several officials who also appreciated the intensive commitment of all those involved in the realization of the exhibition. I will only give here the names and add the photos, the reader will find more substantial content in the jubilee book which also contains some forewords by the speakers.


Bodo Klimpel, Mayor of Haltern am See and patron of the event


Thomas Knuth, Chairman of the SV Königsspringer Haltern 1962 e.V.,
with the new publication Haltener Schachspiegeleien…


Heinrich Schriewer, Chairman of the City Sports Association


Wolfgang Kölnberger, Chairman of the Chess Association Ruhrgebiet e.V.



Bernhard E. Köster, Director of the Public Library Haltern am See



Dieter Stüber, Creative Director and Organizer of the exhibition


In view of the early Sunday morning hour (start at 10 am) the event was very well-attended, after the speeches most visitors moved to the basement of the public library where the chess exhibition was housed and where the guests could take some refreshment (beverages and snacks). I was pleasantly surprised then by the exhibition, as the collectibles provided largely by Haltern citizens were most remarkable, and it is very meritorious what a comparatively small local chess club (with only about 60 members) has achieved here together with helpers and sponsors. Similar applies to the beautiful and recommendable jubilee book (see our announcement which was offered (fresh from the press) in the exhibition hall – I was very pleased to receive a copy from the hands of Mrs Masthoff. Aditionally it should be mentioned that the chess club offered a little competition for the visitors (i.e. to solve a not so hard chess problem with an ornamental constellation of the pieces).


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