wilhelm steinitz

The first undisputed World Champion in the history of chess was Wilhelm Steinitz from 1886 to 1894.

Steinitz was born on May 17, 1836, the youngest of thirteen sons in Prague, which was then part of the Austrian Empire. He studied math in Vienna, but dropped out of college to play chess professionally.

After winning the Vienna Championship in 1861, he moved to London and participated in the international tournament in London, 1862, where he finished 6th and won the tournament's brilliancy prize for his win over Augustus Mongredien.

In 1883, Steinitz emigrated to the USA, where, in 1886, he played the first official World Championship match against Johannes Zukertort. The match took place in New York, St. Louis and New Orleans and Steinitz won decisively by 12½–7½ (ten wins, five draws, five losses).

Steinitz became a U.S. citizen in 1888, and lived there until his deat, August 12, 1900.