Marshall wrote extensively about his life and games. Here's what he had to say about the founding of his club:
One event…took on added importance as the years went on. This was the founding of Marshall’s Chess Divan at Keene’s Chop House, 70 West 36th Street, New York, in 1915. The object was to establish in New York a central meeting place for lovers of chess, much on the same lines as such famous resorts as Simpson’s Divan in London and the Café de la Regence in Paris. It was my idea to make the Divan a place of instruction where young players would be encouraged and where all chess players could feel free to gather.
The friends who visited us at the Divan formed the nucleus of the present Marshall Chess Club, with its notable membership and palatial quarters. We occupied various premises from 1915 to 1922, when we decided to incorporate the club. Alrick H. Man was the first President and our first club house, purchased by a group of members, was at 135 West 12th Street. In 1931, ... the club’s present quarters and also my home, was purchased. Here we are glad to greet old friends and help to develop the young players of today. Many of the leading players of the country are members and new talent is constantly being encouraged.
It must be remembered that it was in the Marshall Chess Club that such players as Reuben Fine, Erling Tholfsen, A. E. Santasiere, Milton Hanauer, Sidney Bernstein, Fred Reinfeld, Arthur Dake, Albert Simonson, Herbert Seidman and many others were developed. And we’re still continuing to turn out gifted young players!
From My Fifty Years of Chess — Frank J. Marshall, 1942
What was true then continues to be true now: many of the country’s top players are members, both adults and fast-rising young players. We look forward to meeting you at the Club and to your becoming part of its history!