January’s Featured Chess Set is part of the collection of the World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF). Since its creation in 1986, the WCHOF has endeavored to highlight the history and cultural significance of the game of chess. The WCHOF’s collection is diverse and includes sets once owned by legendary players, mass-produced sets with lively pop culture themes, antique ivory sets, travel sets, as well as chess computers. Through these artifacts, the WCHOF illustrates how chess has evolved through its over 1500-year history.
In the NHL Collectors Edition Chess Set, a hockey rink serves as the board for a unique chess set depicting hockey players, coaches, and referees. The set celebrates the National Hockey League (NHL), which was founded in 1917. At the time of its founding, the league only had five teams, but has since expanded to 31. Saint Louis, the location of the World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF), gained the Blues in 1967, when the league embarked on the largest expansion in the history of professional sports, doubling the number of teams from six to 12. In 1994, hockey became the official winter sport of Canada. This is one of a number of sports-themed chess sets in the collection of the WCHOF.