Eternal Sun

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Eternal Sun
Breed Quarter Horse
Discipline Racing
Sire Eternal War
Grandsire Silver King
Dam Sierra Glitter
Maternal grandsire Diamond Villiant
Sex Stallion
Foaled 1958
Country United States
Color Sorrel
Breeder John L. Taylor
Owner B.F. Phllips, Jr.
Harold Howard
12–2–1–1, AAA speed rating
Major wins
Los Alamitos Championship (twice)
Other awards
AQHA Racing Register of Merit
AQHA Champion
Michigan Quarter Horse Association Hall of Fame
Last updated on: September 9, 2017.

Eternal Sun (1958–1985) was an American Quarter Horse foaled in 1958. He was a Quarter Horse race horse and an American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) show horse. He earned numerous AQHA awards throughout his career. He was also a sire of 908 foals, many of whom are themselves AQHA award earners and race horses. He was inducted into the Michigan Quarter Horse Association Hall of Fame in 1989.


Eternal Sun was a 1958 sorrel stallion sired by Eternal War and out of Sierra Glitter by Silver King.[1] He was an American Quarter Horse.[1] He had a white star on his forehead and a white sock on his left hind leg.[2] John L. Taylor of Chino, California, bred Eternal Sun. His pedigree includes horses such as Bulldog, Old Sorrel, and Man O War.[2]

Eternal Sun was an AQHA Champion and a Racing Register of Merit earner. The horse earned 41 Halter points as well as points in cutting with AQHA. In 1960, he was awarded the AQHA Racing Register of Merit. In 1964, Eternal Sun was an Open AQHA Champion.[1] Eternal Sun was an AQHA Champion 13 times, an AQHA Grand Champion 7 times, and a Reserve Grand Champion 4 times.[3]


Racing career

Eternal Sun competed in Quarter Horse horse racing for two years. Quarter Horse racing is different than Thoroughbred racing, in that distances are shorter. Eternal Sun's racing record is 12 starts in two years. He won two of his 12 races, placed second in one, and third in one. He earned a total of $1,676.00 in purse money. In 1960, Eternal Sun raced three times at the Los Alamitos Race Course, not placing in any of those races. In 1961, Eternal Sun raced at the Bay Meadows Racetrack (now defunct) and the Los Alamitos Race Course. At Bay Meadows he placed second in one of the maiden races. At Los Alamitos, he placed third in one of the allowance races, and he placed first two times in two other races.[4]

Initial breeding career

American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame inductee B.F. Phillips, Jr., of Frisco, Texas, originally operated a cattle ranch, but decided in the late 1940s to liquidate his cattle business. Instead, he started a horse operation. A cutting show interested him so much that he started breeding and showing cow horses. In the early 1960s, he also started a stallion operation. In particular, he stood three stallions of his own, of which Eternal Sun was one. In 1966; however, Phillips' interests changed again and he became interested in race horses.[5] He had a production sale where he sold his breeding stallions, and he sold Eternal Sun to Harold Howard,[6] along with four mares.[7]

Show career and breeding

Harold Howard owned a strawberry farm in Remus, Michigan and plowed his land with draft horses. Always on the lookout for an "an eye-catching horse that could do it all", in 1966 he came across an ad in Quarter Horse Journal for a production sale at Phillips' ranch in Texas that included a photo of Eternal Sun standing with his broodmare band. Howard drove to Texas and was the top bidder for the stallion. However, he was short of cash, and promised Phillips that he was good for the total. Phillips ripped off a corner of his sale catalog and Howard wrote an IOU.[6] They formalized the deal with a handshake. Eternal Sun was 8 years old at the time.[6]

Eternal Sun was a new style of Quarter Horse when he came to Michigan, useful for breeding. "Horses were a lot shorter and stockier," Howard's daughter Mary Kay said. "Eternal Sun had an elegant head and neck and an irresistible charisma. I’ll never forget his eyes: His foals always had his eyes." Before Eternal Sun arrived in Michigan, he was already turning heads.[6]

In 1967, the American Quarter Horse Association invited the Howards to show Eternal Sun at Stallion Row at the inaugural All American Quarter Horse Congress. Howard and his six children bred the stallion and his offspring, and also showed the horses. Howard channeled his experience from driving plow horses into show driving, and he learned to pleasure drive as well as halter drive. Demand for Eternal Sun's progeny was so high that they sometimes were sold almost as soon as they finished training. Howard's son, Dar, started the colts, and he spent five years on one of them, Eternal Pete. Once Eternal Pete got his AQHA Championship, he and Dar competed in state reining, which they won for two consecutive years.[6]

Eternal Sun was a leading sire in six AQHA categories. According to Dar, Howard said that "there weren't many horses that paid their own way. 'Eternal' built his barn and helped buy the farm we have now".[6]


AQHA registered Eternal Sun in their stud book as number 0151802. Eternal Sun sired 908 Quarter Horse foals in his lifetime.[1] Out of those 908 foals came 343 performers and 59 race starters.[6] His progeny earned 3,598 halter points, 5,612 performance points, 104 performance Register of Merit (ROM) designations, and 34 AQHA championships. He also sired over 100 futurity winners. Eternal Sun is still reputed to be one of the top broodmare sires.[3][1]

In 1968, Eternal Sun was the fourth leading producer of Halter Champions. After a few years of breeding, the farm had grown to over 200 horses. Breeders came from the United States and Canada seeking his genetics. Most of the horses who were born on the farm, trained there, and were sold had Eternal Sun's bloodline. These colts all had exemplary characteristics and disposition. Other successful progeny include Quiet Enjoyment, Story Man, Fistfull, and A Star in Time.[7]

Eternal Sun's daughter Eternal Linda (out of Chuck's Fiddle) is one of his most successful progeny. The mare was a sorrel like her sire, and she produced 11 foals. She notched up three youth and open AQHA championships. She also earned three youth and open performance ROMs. She earned a Superior in both halter and western pleasure. She is also the only one of his progeny to join him in the Michigan Quarter Horse Hall of Fame. Eternal Linda lived her entire life on the Howard farm.[6]

Noted AQHA Hall of Fame breeder and owner Carol Harris of BoBett Farm in Florida recalled seeing Matlock Rose show Eternal Sun once. Harris is most well-known for her AQHA Hall of Fame horse, Rugged Lark. Eternal Sun's demeanor and physical traits impressed Carol so much, she brought her champion mare, Judy Dell to him. Eternal Dell, their colt, made Carol a winner. Eternal Dell changed the style of the next generation, with his sire's physical traits. She relates that “His (Howard's) wonderful stallion was a very big part of my success.” She later brought another of her top-notch horses to him, Majestic Dell, (by Eternal Dell and out of Quo Vadis by Little Lloyd), whom Carol regarded almost as highly as Rugged Lark.[6]

Death and legacy

Eternal Sun lived on the Howard farm for almost 20 years.[6] Eternal Sun died at the age of 27 in 1985[3] and was buried on the farm next to a statue of him constructed in his honor.[6][7] His headstone, erected by Howard, reads, "Here lies the horse that changed my life".[6] Eternal Sun was inducted into the Michigan Quarter Horse Association Hall of Fame in 1989.[8]


Pedigree of Eternal Sun[2]

Eternal War
b 1944



Eternal Bull

b 1939



Bull Dog

br 1927

Plucky Liege
Rose Eternal

b 1925

Rose of Roses
Red Haze

ch 1939



Man O War

ch 16.2 1917

Fair Play
Golden Haze

ch 1923

Golden Broom
Smoky Lamp
Sierra Glitter

sor 1950

Quarter Horse

Silver King

b 1937

Quarter Horse

Old Sorrel

ch 1915

Hickory Bill
Dr Rose Mare
Clegg Mare No 3


Sam Watkins
Mare by Little Joe
Diamond Villiant

sor 1934

Quarter Horse

CAP 2 Tom Glover 1
Valiant Mare


  1. ^ a b c d e "Get of Sire Detail - Eternal Sun" (PDF). American Quarter Horse Association. Retrieved September 9, 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c Michelson, Miles. "Eternal Sun Quarter Horse". Retrieved September 9, 2017. 
  3. ^ a b c "Eternal Sun". Regal Paints. Retrieved September 13, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Eternal Sun Racing Profile". Equibase. Retrieved September 10, 2017. 
  5. ^ "B.F. Phillips, Jr". AQHA Hall of Fame. American Quarter Horse Association. Retrieved September 10, 2017. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Eternal Sun". American Quarter Horse Association. Retrieved September 10, 2017. 
  7. ^ a b c "The Story of the Statue". Howard Farms. Retrieved September 12, 2017. 
  8. ^ "Hall of Fame: Eternal Sun". Michigan Quarter Horse Association. Retrieved September 15, 2017. 

External links

  • The Story of the Statue at Howard Farms
  • Cowboy with the horse "Eternal Sun" at University of North Texas
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