1961 MS State Open Picture

front of picture

back of picture

I received email from Lee Brady from Houston in April, 2005 that included this picture. Here are the contents of the email:

Dear Mr. Stewart,

While going through some old family photos I came across one of the

Mississippi State Open chess tourney in 1961. I thought your organization

might like to have a copy. My dad, William Lee "Bill" Fowler was one of

the trophy winners in the tournament. He played in many tournaments in

Mississippi, LA and Texas through the years and was a rated player. He

passed away in December of 1997.He would have been 27 0r 28 in this picture.

I think he sent a telegram to my mom from this tourney and they were married

shortly thereafter--it may have even been a proposal. While growing up most

of our family vacations were to chess tournaments in Natchez, Hodges Gardens

(near Leesville, LA), Baton Rouge, Lafayette, New Iberia, Shreveport and

other places.

I am sending you a copy of the front and back of the photo. You may be able

to make out the names. I think the old gentleman in the picture may be

Robert Scrivener, the oldest MS state champion. (While trying to find info I

stumbled on something about him. He was 80.) Other names on the back of the

picture are Fowler (2nd from Rt, 2nd place), Parham (3rd place),Weaks (4th)

and Miller (5th?). I think "Miller" may be "Troy Miller" from Natchez. His

name is very familiar to me--I think he and my dad competed together quite a

few times.

If you know anymore about this picture and can pass it on, I'd appreciate


Lee Fowler Brady

Houston, TX

Jerry Krouse (a long time Mississippi chess player) was able to clarify some points in a later email:

Hell Douglas and Mr. Brady,

Thanks for the photograph, front and back. I have examined it. I did not

start playing chess until 1966, and it was even after this that I played in

my first tournament. I am familiar, though, with the names you mention.

But, there may be a problem with the names on the back of the picture. I do

not see Fenner Parham. I would recognize Fenner since I sat across the

board from him literally hundreds of times. I know that Troy Miller is on

the left (I knew him well, too), and I presume that Scrivener is next to

him. Though he looks pretty old and decrepit to have beaten either Fenner

Parham or Troy Miller -- both powerhouses of chess at that time.

So, I am guessing that the lady is not Fenner dressed as a woman. Next are

two younger men who must be Bill Fowler and/or Weeks. I do not know of

Weeks, and this goes so far back that I do not recognize Bill Fowler in the


I do, however, remember Bill Fowler. He was a tenacious and strong player.

I remember attending a tournament in Shreveport and contesting a game with

him. I remember him being rated in the 1900's when we played. My rating

would have been, at that time, lower. It was a heartbreaking loss for me

after a long, hard struggle. I may have been in line for a high prize if I

had won that game, and I am almost certain it was in the last round of a

tournament. I seemed to remember him living in Shreveport at the time, but

he could have been in Texas. I just don't remember. I am sure I have the

game tucked away somewhere.

I may have played him more than once. I am not sure. There is no question

that he was a strong player, though.

That is about all I can contribute for now. If anything else develops, Cc..

me too.


Jerry Krouse

Douglas L Stewart

Last Update: October 9, 2005