Out in Oregon, this die-hard Cadillac fanatic lives among his herd
Dan Morehouse grew up heavily steeped in his father’s obsession in Ford vehicles and parts, but Morehouse’s automotive fate drew him elsewhere—Cadillacs. What started in college with a couple of 1959 Cadillacs that he sold to buy a house turned into a whole lot more, despite his best efforts. “I found this ’59 Biarritz, and it took three years but I ended up buying that as well,” says Morehouse in the latest video from Iron Trap Garage. Soon after he got in touch with another Cadillac enthusiast who had a load of parts he wanted to sell, and Morehouse and his wife resolved to flip the collection to fund restoration for the Biarritz.
“I bought a lot of cars, and a lot of parts from one guy. My whole entire goal was just to restore one car and just be a normal person,” says Morehouse. “I didn’t want to follow in my family’s roots and buy tons of cars—I was 22 years old I just wanted to be done. Turns out that once you get one you just kind of keep going and then things fall into your lap, and suddenly I have several hundred Cadillacs that I’ve owned.”
Sitting in his backyard, amidst a little pond with ferns, tall grass, and the gentle babble of a little waterfall running over the rusted corpse of a finned ’59 Fleetwood, he estimates more than 400 Caddies in total, including an example of every ’59 model ever made. “I can’t turn it down. It’s an uncontrollable disease to go buy a ’59 Cadillac if I find or see it. If it’s one day’s drive I’m on it. Two day’s drive I’ll kind of hesitate, buy it, and then I’ll sell it or some parts. I just have fun with Cadillacs—I don’t even look at other cars.”
As the collection grew it became obvious to him that he needed to sell off parts simply because there were way too many for him to be able to handle, and it turned into a side business he calls Big Fins. “Big Fins Morehouse, Big Fins Cadillac, or Dan from Oregon, ’cause I’m the guy I guess.”
Oh, he’s definitely the guy. Scattered among this Caddy kingdom are literal piles of grilles, his dad’s vintage gas pumps, other Cadillac from various years and conditions, 134 saber wheels with stacks of hubcaps, and a kid’s playground fashioned with an integrated ’41 Caddy/fire truck hybrid. A ’59 Fleetwood buried under untold mounds of trim here, shelves of Tri-Power components there. Did I mention the entire shed full of fenders? There is an entire shed full of fenders.
Although several cars are on Morehouse’s “keeper list,” a huge chunk of cars and parts you see in the video is for sale. After all, Morehouse’s first Biarritz from way back when still isn’t done (it’s at a friend’s house), but clearly the Cadillac craziness shows no signs of slowing down. Have a look around his backyard and ogle his wild, albeit pure dedication to a single marque. As he puts it, “every day’s a swap meet.”