Frank Camaratta is the internationally recognized expert in antique Staunton and other playing sets. He has been a serious collector and researcher into antique playing chess sets, their design, and history, since 1986. His serious research, which started in 1989, was centered on Staunton chessmen and quickly expanded into Pre-Staunton playing sets.
Frank

 

Mr. Camaratta is a serious chess tournament player, National title holder, International Chess Master, Collector and Historian with a broad educational and professional background. He purchases and sells chess collections, large and small, and has provided numerous appraisal and research services. In addition, Mr. Camaratta has brokered the sale of several large collections in the States and overseas. In 1990, Mr. Camaratta founded The House of Staunton, Inc. and later, The House of Staunton Antiques, LLC. Born 1943 (older than dirt!), Philadelphia, PA. Frank A. Camaratta, Jr. Mother Raymonde Gilda Camaratta, Father: Frank A Camaratta The "A" doesn't stand for anything. Sisters: Josephine, 54 and Arlene (deceased), Brother Joseph, age 40(!) Mother came to the US from Canada during the depression, one of 6. Father orphaned at 4, one of 17.

Raised in South and West Philadelphia. Attended Monsignor Bonner High School in Upper Darby, PA, a suburb of Philadelphia. Attended Drexel Institute of Technology (Now Drexel University) in Philadelphia, Pa. B.S. Mechanical Engineering 1967. Graduated summa cum laude (3.9/4.0) MS Applied Mechanics (among other degrees), 1968. Graduated summa cum laude (4.0/4.0) Drove a beer truck in South Philadelphia for my Uncle while attending Drexel - was very popular with the residents!

Married 1965, three sons, Marc, 32, Christopher, 28 and Matthew, 27 Remarried in 1992. Three stepchildren, Sheppard, 27, Rebecca, 24 and Arnette, 22. Two Dogs, Shadow (yes, with 2 "d"s) and Samson.

Worked for the Department of the Navy, (Naval Air Engineering Center and Naval Air Systems Command) through 1978 as an engineer on Naval Air capable systems.

Opened and operated a Slot Car Raceway C&V Raceways) in Philadelphia in 1967. Opened a business which Designed Custom Sound systems for homes and offices in 1972. Active in Junior JCs in the 1970s.

Worked for United Technologies Corporation in several Divisions in Connecticut and Florida as a Section Chief, Branch Manager, and Department Head through 1998. Responsibilities Engineering Analysis, Systems Engineering, Reliability and Maintainability, Materials and Processes, Structures and Dynamics and Program Management for aircraft and rocket propulsion systems. (I other words, they couldn't find anything that I was competent to do, so they kept trying!)

Retired in 1998 to run the House of Staunton, full time, which I started in 1990. Deal in antique chess products and designer of the House of Staunton brand chess sets and boards.

Learned to play chess at age 16. First rating, 6 months later, 1825. OTB Master. Abandoned serious OTB play around 1972 due to family and professional pressures. Took up Correspondence chess in 1972. Played in three USCF Absolute Championships (1977, 1978, 1979) and Golden Knights with some success. In the 1977 Absolute, placed 2nd; 1978 Absolute, took 1st place; 1979 Absolute, placed 2nd. Successfully represented the US on the Correspondence Olympic team, played first Board. Correspondence Chess Master. Achieved the ICCF International Master Title.

Taught chess in grade schools and adult evening schools. Gave numerous exhibitions in High Schools, prisons, and convalescent homes. Formed several chess clubs, most successful was, The Shoreline Chess Club of Madison, CT, in 1980, which is still active. Was active in USCF at the Committee level in the 1980s (Formed the Computer Rating Agency and wrote the procedures, started and wrote the original guidelines for induction to the Hall of Fame, active in the Correspondence and Rating committees). Became a politician (not a very successful one) in 1990. Elected Vice President 1n 1990, Treasurer in 1993, and again to the Executive Board in 2001 as Treasurer and now Member at large.

Active in Chess Collectors International (CCI). Donated numerous artifacts for display at the World Chess Hall of Fame and Sid Samole Chess Museum in Miami, Florida. Hobbies include woodworking, automobile racing, boxing, baseball, board games, music and antique chess set collecting, computers.

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