Special Projects

World's Largest Chess Piece
May 7, 2012
World's Largest Chess Piece—May 7, 2012 "Gateway to Chess Day"

World's Largest Chess Piece—May 7, 2012 "Gateway to Chess Day"

World’s Largest Chess Piece

On Monday, May 7th at 9:00 a.m., the unveiling of the World’s Largest Chess Piece, located between the World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF) and the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL), was one of the many events marking the opening day of the 2012 U.S. Chess Championships. The city of Saint Louis has hosted this prestigious tournament since 2008.

The unveiling ceremony included a welcoming by Tony Rich, executive director of the CCSCSL; remarks by Rex and Jeanne Sinquefield, founders of the CCSCSL and WCHOF; and an announcement by Mayor Slay declaring May 7th, 2012 as “Gateway to Chess Day” in Saint Louis.

A perfect, large-scale version of a “Championship Staunton” king, the record-breaking chess piece was a joint effort between the WCHOF and the CCSCSL. Here are some facts about it:


The piece is approximately 45 times the size of a standard king, stands 14’ 7” tall, and the base measures 6’ in diameter. If a board was built to proporional size, it would be 72’ x 72’ with 9’ squares.

The board could hold:
·        82,944 baseballs: just under 3” diameter
·        392 bath tubs: 5’ x 2.5’
·        18 average size swimming pools: 24’ × 12’
·        Nine school buses: 40’ x 8’

·        Professional basketball hoop (10 feet)
·        An average female giraffe (14 feet)
·        The Statue of Liberty’s fingernail (13 feet)
·        The piece would not fit under most overpasses in Saint Louis (standard city underpass is 14 feet)


In addition to the unveiling of the World’s Largest Chess Piece, the opening ceremony for the U.S. Chess Championships will mark the beginning of the Championship games. The event is set to take place at the Missouri Botanical Gardens on May 7th. For more information about the championship players and to create your very own fantasy chess team—visit uschesschamps.com.


Follow the World’s Largest Chess Piece on Twitter! @STLChessKing



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