Not Just the ACBL Story – But HISTORY

True accounts of events and people who shaped the ACBL

ACBL Bridge Beat #17 – Earning a Gold Card…

with 2 comments

In 1947, the Quiz of Two Cities (, a radio show which aired every Sunday on WOR in New York and WGN in Chicago, hosted two teams of bridge players. The Chicago team of Bill McGhee, Maynard Adams, Jules Bank and Arthur Glatt handily defeated the New York team of William McKenney, Harry Roth, Dick Frey and Sonny Moyse with a perfect score.

But something more historic took place that day.

Some time prior to the Quiz, the ACBL Executive committee voted to make all Life Masters life members of the ACBL. The committee prepared a gold metallic card for each Life Master engraved with names and membership numbers.

The first gold card was awarded when McKenney was presented to the audience on the show. After the show, McKenney presented Dick Frey with his card and Howard Engle presented each member of the Chicago Team with their cards.

At the end of 1947, the ACBL had 97 Life Masters among its membership. In December, 2011 The Bulletin’s monthly list of new Life Masters totaled 177! To this day, every Life Master receives a gold card acknowledging the achievement.

William McKenney and Dick Frey

William McKenney and Dick Frey


Written by acbl

February 9, 2012 at 9:28 am

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. I must admit that I was impressed when I received my metallic gold card and Life Master certificate in the mail. I had expected another plastic playing card-like member/rank card but with gold color (rather than ACBL blue) on the back and perhaps gold (rather than white) for the background on the face.

    The gold cards are so nice that my partner put his in a “safe place” and forgot where he put it. Mine’s in a fire resistant lock box with important documents. I guess I’ll have another plastic card to carry around with my next rank change.

    James Brian Potter

    February 10, 2012 at 1:42 am

  2. What a wonderful surprise to receive my gold card when reaching life master! It’s even more special now that I know the history!

    So glad you are doing these history “bites”; I love reading them!


    February 13, 2012 at 9:29 am

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