The North Carolina Find: Ford

NC Find Mustang

For today’s installment of the North Carolina Find, we are going to have a look at the Fords. There isn’t the wide variety of Ford products here like there are GM products, but don’t fear the Fords that are here are some of the best of what the Blue Oval has to offer, there might even be a special appearance by a famous vehicle. And if you are a fan of Lincolns, specifically the Lincoln Zephyr, we recommend sitting down for this one! Like the previous post, we are going to lump all the Ford products together. If you are a Ford nut or just love barn finds, this should prove to be a worthwhile read!

NC Find T-Bird

Like his selection of GM products, Billy only bought the Ford products he connected with. He purchased Fords that he liked, that he thought were fun, or ones that he saw future value in. He obviously connected with and saw value in sports cars, as seen by his selection of Corvettes. He also saw value in cars that bridged gaps, take the Thunderbird. It was part luxury car, part convertible, and a bit sports car. Now comparing the Thunderbird to the Corvette wouldn’t be a very fair comparison, as they are completely different machines, but there is one thing that they definitely have in common, Billy collected a lot of them!

NC Find Lincoln

If the Thunderbird isn’t your cup of tea, but you’re still a fan of luxury cars, than you will love Billy’s collection of Lincolns. It would seem he has a soft spot for the Lincoln-Zephyr and has more than a few. Combined with his Cadillac collection, he has some of the best luxury cars to ever come out of America. His Lincolns are in varying conditions, with some having already been restored, while others are in less than perfect shape. One is even full of bullet holes.

Godfather Lincoln 8

This bullet ridden Lincoln is the famous car we mentioned earlier. If you have ever watched the Godfather, you may recognize this car. We won’t ruin it for those that haven’t seen it yet, but let’s say this car met the business end of a Tommy Gun. There were several cars used in the movie, but this is the actual car used for the dramatic scene. Billy has plenty of documentation to back it up and even has autographed memorabilia that came with the car. This isn’t the only unusual and interesting piece in Billy’s collection of Fords, but we will let you discover the rest for yourselves in the gallery below! So which of these Fords would you enjoy having in your garage?

 

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Comments

  1. MH in MN

    I’m not a ford guy but still nice cars. That guy has to much money. Rather have one of those caddy converts!

    • Lee

      We need to remember that when this guy bought a lot of these cars, they were just used cars. I recall passing up a hemi cuda when I was younger at a used car lot for $3500. Nobody wanted that gas guzzler at the time. When most people were taking vacations, buying boats and other depreciating items, this guy had the forethought to buy something worth while. While I hate to see cars just sitting around, I am glad that there are guys like that still with us.

  2. GunGirlNC

    So what if he has too much money ??

  3. Dirty Dingus McGee

    Cyclone Spoiler, Torino Talladega, 57 “F” Bird, Galaxie with a big block……

    Man has good taste.

  4. Ian

    I know there are quite a few left-and easy to find etc-but had hoped they’d used
    a mockup rather than a real car in the film….hate to see such a lovely car destroyed

  5. Justin Allison

    I’ll take the 69 fastback!! (Now where do I raise the money?) :)

  6. Don Andreina

    That 50/51 Lincoln appeals. I’d love to get the Sonny car and drive it around as is.

  7. Brian

    Yes, this guy truely has an amazing collection of cars, but it’s too bad they are just gathering dust. It good news that they are kept indoors, but they aren’t getting the care and feeding that they clearly need and deserve. I totally understand that antique car collecting can get out of hand, but it seems to me that he’s bitten off more than he can (or wants to) chew. When the hobby gets to be more about the chase and capture than enjoying the cars, its time to regroup and reassess because the cars will suffer. Don’t get me wrong, I love seeing his cars, but it just makes me sad that they are not getting used, enjoyed, and that they are not out in the community where folks can see, enjoy, and learn about them. That really what it’s all about!

    • paul

      yep if they never see the sun ( get used) what’s the point, but I have never believed in garage queens.

    • Jim-Bob

      I couldn’t agree more. At some point it becomes hoarding with a higher budget. The sad thing is that many of those cars will now require restoration again to be what they were when he first got them. Dirt can do a number on paint as the particles get gradually drawn into it. While the car will probably be driveable with minimal work, it’s kind of sad to see something that had been built with great care just left to sit and decay. Yes, it’s his money and yes he has the right to do with it as he pleases but I just can’t help but see it as a waste.

      • Brian

        Yes, I avoided using the H word, but it was on my mind! Your also right that it’s his money, and if I had loads of it, I’d have way too many cars too (already do according to some people’s definition), but with a collection this size, he really need a mechanic and and “lot boy” to keep them all clean and road ready, much like Leno does, so that they are ready to drive and enjoy at the owner’s whem.

  8. jim s

    i will take any/all the trucks, t birds and the 8n. this is fun. thanks

  9. memikeyounot

    It’s hard to look at all these and know I don’t have the money for one, let alone more :(

    Having said that, photo listed as Lincoln 17 is a Hudson.

    • Josh Staff

      Thanks for pointing that out, organizing and renaming all of these photos has been a daunting task. I’ve tried to make sure none were mislabeled, but with 200+ photos to sort and organize, a few are bound to get labeled wrong!

      • memikeyounot

        It’s a bigger job than I would want to, and I’m such a fan of Hudsons of all kinds, I notice pretty much everything that is posted about them.

        Thanks

  10. Kerner

    ’69 mustang, a Mach 1? I’ll take that one please, just let me know when and where ;)

  11. erikj

    Well where do I start! Billy has a amazing taste for all the right stuff. The 63 vette and the 69 z-28 look sweet. I like the that stuff best,but for some reason those zephers look so cool, love the lines. I notice a lot of pics. with people wandering around. If I could, I would fly over there pay whatever and just leave me be as I wander around just to admire all of those vintage masterpieces. I could only wish to beable to take one home with me, but they are all worth so much that that would only be a dream- but I could afford to go there and at least look at them. That’s a dream in itself.

    Great find!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I see a wing car can,t wait to see the mopars

  12. BradL

    Concerning “Sonny’s Bullet Car”, I compared the holes in the above Lincoln with the one from the attached video clip. I can definitely say this is NOT to movie car. Judge for yourself.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9AMKAdEwMo

  13. Steve Hughes

    Beautiful 56 Ford.

  14. Jim-Bob

    Which one would I want? Honestly, as someone who’s collection of cars looks like it came from the island of misfit toys, I would want the blue Honda Z600 that has the T-Bird hardtop leaning against it. Most of the other cars will likely see other homes in the future but I fear this little kei car has no future at all. As someone who loves small cars with <4 cylinder engines, I would want to get it, make it live again and drive it. It's not exciting, but it's similar to me: quirky, unusual and a bit out of place. Plus it would be nice to have a car that's smaller than the 3 cylinder Geo Metro I drive every day.

    • z1rider

      Hey Jim-Bob, good catch, I missed the Z on my first view of the slideshow, and I own two AN 600’s so shame on me. My first car was one of the AN 600’s I own, all 600 cc of fire breathing air cooled wonder. And 36 hp (one hp per cubic inch) which was good for a zero to 60 that exactly equaled the 1/4 mile time of 21 seconds or so. As my handle would suggest, my first motorcycle had two more cylinders and 300 more cc’s of displacement. Not a good first choice for a first bike, I feel lucky to have survived.

    • Brian

      I share your love for the misfit cars! My small collection is built from dirt cheap cars that no one else wanted! Someday, they will be desired! He who is laughted at, laughs last!

  15. Jim Harris

    Three of the cars in your slide show were built by and owned by George Bickle, I don’t think those qualify of what I normally think of as barn finds. The ’56 Ford red & black convertible, ’56 Ford Victoria 2d HT red & silver, and the ’65 Ford F100 red pickup. I consider George to be a master craftsman and those have all been rebuilt by him and appeared in automotive magazines.

  16. Mark E

    Speaking of misfits, this is the first LTD II that I’ve seen in the past 20 some odd years, collection or otherwise. Ah, Torino, what has become of ye?? ^_^

    I’ve always loved Lincolns. Those Zephyrs are beautiful as is the Mk II and the Hudson acts as an interesting wake-me-up in the middle of all the Ford products. What’s the story behind the street rod though? The signature(s) are indecipherable but it apparently must have been done by someone famous like Boyd Coddington, for example…

  17. MikeH

    There are few cars as beautiful [and impractical] as the 39-41 Lincoln Zephyr coupes!

  18. z1rider

    With all due respect, pic 44 is not a Ford. I don’t know what it is, I just know it’s not Ford. It appears to be from 32-35ish for model year, and all Ford’s (at least the coupes) had suicide doors. The wheels are a giveaway also. I’m thinking Chevy or Dodge. The hubcaps look to have bowtie’s on them but I can’t be sure.

  19. geomechs geomechs Member

    The early Ford pickups have my attention. Of course that red Lincoln Zephyr would look real good at my place. The bullet-riddled Godfather car? I’m sorry for being a little skeptical but I heard other stories about what happened to the car. It’s kind of like the REAL Bonnie and Clyde death car. I’ve seen two of them up close and personal (and documented ?) but I’ve heard that there are at least four that claim to be THE car.

  20. Alex

    My God. The Zephyrs! These cars are such a joy to look at. I’m enjoying touring this guy’s collection so much. It’s amazing. What must it feel like to stroll among these dusty jewels?

  21. fred

    Not that Billy would take the advice of someone posting on this thread, but If I could talk with him in person, I would ask him to consider sacrificing just one of those high dollar (say $100K) cars for the good of the rest. That amount would build a huge metal building with roll up doors and a few lights. Move in the cars in that are now protected only by sheds or pole barns. What a difference that would make in preserving them for the next generation! I have to give him kudos for sheltering them as well as he has- many NC cars would be toast by now.

    • Brian

      It would also be ideal if, when building were completed and as cars were being moved in, he set up an “assembly line” whereas fuel tanks, coolant systems, brake systems, maybe even transmissions, were all drained. Maybe power wash them and vacuum them out to remove trash, leaves, critter nests, etc. then inside for the deep sleep. I guess I am asking for WAY too much now? Too little to late?

    • Bill

      Billy always told me I like them more than anyone else, they aren’t going anywhere till I’m gone….however I did manage to talk him out of a 36 Chevy Pickup that was about 1/2 a mile deep in the woods.

  22. Bill

    Let me just say I know this man very well, this isn’t even a 10th of his cars. His father started this collection.He won his first car show at the age of 12. By far the best body man I have ever met.

  23. Scot Allison

    I agree with Brian!
    Billy should sell off some of the duplicates he has, and build a better facility for preserving these beauties. A complete museum open to the public!
    Restore/preserve these treasures!
    Especially get those cars out of the woods!

  24. Quinton B.

    I’ll take the two 50s Ford pickups and the coupe!

  25. Jim C

    I was invited by a fellow car club member to visit Billy’s shop back in August, these are the pictures I took that day. George’s cars and truck weren’t part of the collection, George was with us that day and we all went back to George’s house after visiting Billy’s shop, that’s where I took these pictures. As mentioned by someone else, this was only a small portion of the collection, we ran out of time before we saw everything else. We were told there was a Chrysler Airflow in one of the buildings we didn’t get to.
    May I add that I walked around most of the day with my mouth wide open, saying, “God, another Hemi”.

  26. Trevon

    I know where a Lincoln Zeyphr currently sits along with a load of other classic cars (mostly 4 doors) Including what appears to be a ’59 cadillac 4 door

  27. RickyM

    I have not seen the Zephyrs before (not too many in England) and loved them. I am curious to know how much Billy has spent over the years buying these cars. I am very envious ……..

  28. Henry

    There is a sad reason some of the cars are not as well kept as all would like. Billy’s mother enjoyed caring for the cars. She passed away a few years ago. She even detailed them before groups came to visit.

  29. James B

    Well I hate seeing all those flat tires. Shows that they are like a hat collection. I know cause I got a huge hat collection and only 10 or 15 are still in mint condition. Most are bent or dirty beyond cleaning. If I had the money to have amassed such a collection I would sell and give them to friends and family that would enjoy them. CARS ARE MADE TO DRIVE. Anyone know what a Barn Soured Horse is?

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