Archibald Keir Murray

26 June 1834, Glasgow SCO ─ 17 May 1907, London, ENG

The son of Thomas Murray, publisher and bookseller, and Margaret Helen Scott Keir. He would go on to be a publisher himself.

He appears to have become associated with Glasgow Chess Club around 1862-64; he was club secretary (for the first time) in season 1864─65 and played for the 'new' club in the match against the 'old' club in February 1865. Unfortunately, a fire at his business premises resulted in the loss of all club documents, including a priceless Minute Book.

He played in the West v East of Scotland matches of 1871, 1872 and 1876, but soon after relinquished his interest in his Glasgow publishing business and moved to London, thereafter appearing as a publisher, advertising agent, editor and author.

When the British Correspondence Chess Association was founded in 1906, A.K. Murray was its first President. He did not last for long in the role, however, as he died in London on 17 May and was buried in Norwood Cemetery on 22 May 1907. (One of his sons, John P. Murray, was involved in the 1906 discussions which led to the formation of the BCCA.)

He was a cousin of W.F. Murray.

Additional notes
In 1859 Murray was instrumental in the formation of Glasgow Volunteer Rifle Corps, later becoming a Major in the 97th Lanarkshire Volunteer Guards. He was the author of History of the Scottish Regiments in the British Army (Thomas Murray and Son, 1862).

Unpublished history of Glasgow Chess Club.
ScotlandsPeople website.
British Chess Magazine 1907, p23.
BCCA: The Official History of the First 75 Years.
Glasgow Herald, 18 May 1907, p1.

Alan McGowan
Historian/Archivist, Chess Scotland

updated 11/5/2022