Yorkshire Chess History
Nicholas Theodore Miniati
(from Chess Bouquet)
The parents of Nicholas Theodore Miniati were Theodore Miniati (born 1830/31/32 but probably 1831, at Constantinople or possibly in Greece) and Eriphyle Miniati (born 1841, at Constantinople). The 1871 census gave the father’s place of birth as Greece, and the mother’s Constantinople; the 1881 census gave both birthplaces as Constantinople, the 1891 gave both birthplaces as Turkey. Both parents would appear to be of Greek extraction, on the basis of their names and those of the children. The parents had arrived in England by 1859 at the very latest.
Theodore and Eriphyle had at least the following nine children, all born at Broughton (between Salford and Manchester), Lancs.:
Telemachus Pericles Miniati was named Pericles Miniati in the 1881 census, and Telemachus P. Miniati in the 1891 census. There is evidence that Alexander may have had a middle initial “T.”
The birth of Nicholas Theodore Miniati was registered in the second quarter of 1860, at nearby Salford. His place of birth is variously given in censuses etc as Broughton, Salford or Manchester. The relevant part of Broughton formed the NE part of the borough of Salford, separated from central Salford by the River Irwell, but was immediately adjacent to Manchester. Salford and Broughton are now part of Greater Manchester.
Slater's Directory of Manchester and Salford, 1863, listed Theodore Miniati, of T. Miniati & Co., living at Kenwood House, Broom Lane, Higher Broughton.
The 1871 census found the two parents and first seven children living with five servants at Kenwood, Broom Lane, Broughton. Father Theodore was a shipper to the Mediterranean. The three eldest children, including 11-year-old “Manchester”-born Nicholas, were scholars.
Slater's Directory of Manchester & Salford, 1876, listed Theodore Miniati, of Reavey & Miniati, embossers &c., living at Kerwood [sic], Broome [sic] Lane, Higher Broughton.
Slater's Directory of Manchester & Salford, 1877-78, listed Theodore Miniati as a maker-up and packer (a change from 1876), with business premises at Dickinson Road, Portland Street, Manchester, and his home at Kenwood, Broom Lane, Higher Broughton.
Slater's Directory of Manchester & Salford, 1879, listed Theodore Miniati as a maker-up and packer, with business premises at 40 Dickinson Road, Portland Street, Manchester, and his home at Kenwood, Broom Lane, Higher Broughton.
The 1881 census found the parents and all nine children living with two servants at Kenwood, Cheltenham Crescent, Broughton-in-Salford. Cheltenham Crescent is a turning off Broom Lane, so this was presumably the same “Kenwood” as in 1871. The parents were now recorded as being naturalised British subjects. Father Theodore was now a maker-up and packer. Alexander and 21-year-old Broughton-born Nicholas were listed as their father’s assistants.
Slater's Directory of Manchester & Salford, 1883, listed father Theodore Miniati as a maker-up and packer, with business premises at 40 Dickinson Road, Portland Street, Manchester, and his home at Kenwood, Broom Lane, Higher Broughton.
Slater's Directory of Manchester & Salford, 1886, listed Theodore Miniati as a maker-up and packer with his business address at 40 Dickinson Road, Portland Street, Manchester.
The 1891 census found the parents and eight children (not Caliroy) living with two servants still at Kenwood, Broom Lane, Higher Broughton. Father Theodore was now a general merchant. Alexander was an insurance official. 31-year-old Broughton-born Nicholas was a newspaper editor. Theodore junior was an analytical chemist.
The marriage of Nicholas Miniati to Helen Walmsley (born 1872/73, Adlington [about 6 miles ENE of Bolton], Lancs.) was registered in the fourth quarter of 1899, at Bolton. Helen (aka “Nellie”) was about thirteen years younger than Nicholas, and in the next two censuses Nicholas seems to have cosmetically reduced his age by two years to avoid highlighting the age gap.
The 1901 census found “39”-year-old Manchester-born Nicholas living with 28-year-old “Nellie” at 9 Church Road, Bolton. Nicholas was now an insurance agent.
Copy-and-paste web mythology has it that our man moved to Greece and was killed there as a soldier in military action in 1909, but this seems not to be true.
The 1911 census found “49”-year-old Salford-born Nicholas T. Miniati living with 38-year-old wife Helen Miniati and Helen’s 76-year-old Huyton-born widowed mother, Annie Walmsley, at 25 Grasmere Road, Oldham, Lancs. Nicholas was now an insurance superintendant.
Slater's Manchester, Salford & Suburban Directory, 1911, listed Miss A. Miniati, L.R.A.M., teacher of music, living at Singleton Road, Higher Broughton, and Alexander T. Miniati, householder, living at 4 Denison Road, Victoria Park, Manchester. These were presumably sister Aspasia and brother Alexander.
The death of Nicholas T. Miniati, at the age of 83, was registered in the fourth quarter of 1943, at Bolton.
“N. T. Miniati”, of Manchester Chess Club or Manchester St. Ann’s Chess Club, represented Lancashire in the following matches: 1884 Lancashire v Yorkshire, 1887 Yorkshire v Lancashire, 1889 Yorkshire v Lancashire and 1890 Lancashire v Yorkshire.
Slater's Directory of Manchester & Salford, 1886, listed “T. N. Miniati” [sic] as secretary of St. Ann’s Chess Club, which met at Stewart’s Restaurant, St. Ann’s Street, Manchester.
He played in a secondary section at the 1889 Amsterdam tournament, finishing in third place.
He played in the 1889 British Chess Association tournament in London, finishing fifth.
In 1890, starting on 06/03/1890, he played a 6-game match with future world champion Emmanuel Lasker, at Manchester, drawing two game and losing four.
For a while around the early 1890s at least, he conducted a chess column in the Manchester Weekly Times.
He was a chess problem composer, and was one of the subjects of Gittins’s Chess Bouquet. He inclined toward non-standard stipulations, as in the following two of his problems, quoted by Gittins:
Copyright © 2013 Stephen John Mann
Census information is copyright of The National Archive, see UK Census Information