J. S. Macmartin

Born: 13 December 1900 (Johnstone, Renfrewshire) - Died: 09 March 1957 (Glasgow)

James Semple Macmartin, born 12 December 1900 in Johnstone, Renfrewshire, was for many years one of the leading players and officials of the Polytechnic Chess Club, Glasgow.

He was a member of the Polytechnic team that won the Spens Cup 1935.

In 1938 he defeated in simultaneous displays both the men's and women's world champions, Alekhine and Miss Menchik.

He was the only player to defeat the American student Max Pavey, the 1939 Scottish champion, during Pavey's brief stay in Scotland.

His birth certificate records his name as McMartin, but all chess references found for him spell his name Macmartin.

Mr Macmartin died in his home at 11 Clifford Street, Glasgow, on 09 March 1957.

Further information about Mr Macmartin would be welcomed.

Birth certificate
Glasgow Herald, 28 October 1938, page 20, column 5.
Chess 1939, October 20, p40.
Glasgow Herald, 11 March 1957, page 1, column 2.

Alan McGowan
Historian, Chess Scotland