The Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary will be sponsoring a lecture by former U.S. Chess Federation President John McCrary titled "Franklin and the Morals of Chess" on Tuesday, September 12, 2006 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Benjamin Franklin Hall of the American Philosophical Society, 104 South Fifth Street, Philadelphia, PA. It is a free event, made possible through the generosity of the John Templeton Foundation. According to the press release, McCrary will speculate on Franklin's actual chess-playing abilities, discuss his acceptance of women as able chess players, and discuss his views on the "Turk"--which he saw in Paris. The lecture will be followed by a question and answer session, a chance to see Franklin's own chess set, and refreshments. For more information, call 215.545.3870, extension 112.
McCrary is the author of an essay titled "Chess and Benjamin Franklin-His Pioneering Contributions," which describes Franklin as an American chess pioneer who authored the first piece of writing on chess published in the United States: "The Morals of Chess" (The Columbian Magazine 1786). Bill Wall offers an interesting chronology on Benjamin Franklin and Chess for those interested in learning more on the subject. Hat tip to Goran.