The Eclipse Livery & T.M. Lynn's "Dan Rice"

With its two large arched entryways facing Second Street, the Eclipse Livery Building (now the home of Wright's Farm Center) was constructed by T.M. Lynn in 1871 for his livery business.

Trustem Mearns Lynn, more commonly known as T.M. Lynn, was born in Londonderry county, Ireland, settled in Portsmouth in 1854. Lynn was politically active, identifying as a Democratic and representing the First Ward on City Council for thirteen years.

Originally three stories high, measuring 124 x 41 feet, with a capacity for forty-five horses, Lynn ran the city's largest livery in the 1870s, with twenty horses in regular service, offering use of "all styles of wagons, buggies and hacks, and boards."

Nelson Evans noted that between 1861 and 1887 Lynn "had the fast horse craze” and had “handled, bought and sold, made and lost money, on many fast horses." His most famous was "Dan Rice," a trotting stallion, whom he named for the Civil War era's most famous circus clown. According to Evans, Lynn bought the horse for $800 in 1862 and sold him for $16,000 in 1866. Adjusted for inflation, the deal was worth over $277,000.

Currier & Ives would immortalize "Dan Rice" in a popular print, published in 1866, forever capturing the strength and beauty of Portsmouth's most famous horse.

Images

Map