Featured Chess Sets 2021

Through the Featured Chess Set project, the World Chess Hall of Fame showcases a variety of chess sets throughout the year. These include highlights from our own collection as well as chess sets owned by friends and chess lovers who have special stories to accompany their sets.


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. This set is part of the museum’s permanent collection.

This dynamic chess set uses musicians from different genres of music to represent a three-sided chess game. The white pieces are made up of opera singers, sophisticated guests, and symphony musicians. Black represents cowboy hats, acoustic guitars, and southern twang––in other words, country music. Silver’s pieces are fans of rock ‘n’ roll, crooning their way across the board. Opera enthusiasts, die-hard country fans, and hippie rock ‘n’ rollers compete in this chess set full of musical references.