SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The classic Cadillac driven by Theodor Seuss Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, is on display at the Wood Museum of Springfield History beginning Tuesday.

Geisel grew up in Springfield and is known for writing more than 60 books under the name Dr. Seuss such as And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street in 1937,  If I Ran the Zoo (1950), Horton Hears a Who! (1955), The Cat in the Hat (1957), and How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1957).

He and his wife moved to La Jolla, California after World War II in the late 1940s, where he drove the gray Cadillac. The car is named the “Grinch Mobile” because, after many years, Geisel was able to obtain the custom GRINCH California license plate.

The Springfield Museums told 22News, Dr. Seuss, the person who created the Grinch, had to wait to get his own character’s name on his license plate because the custom plate was already registered to someone else in California.

According to a 1979 Washington Post article, Geisel had to wait “several years for the plate because when they first applied they learned that an ardent Seuss-lover with four children had already put GRINCH on the license plates and both sides of his RV. He finally moved to Iowa City and released GRINCH back to the Geisels, with a note of apology for having hogged it so long.”

Geisel died of cancer in 1991 at his home in La Jolla at the age of 87.

The Cadillac is now back in Geisel’s hometown and will be on display as part of the Springfield Museums Grinchmas Celebration through the New Year.

Cadillac drive by Theodor Seuss Geisel
(Springfield Museums)

“A little imagination is all it takes to picture Dr. Seuss himself driving this beautiful car. We hope many fans will come see this remarkable connection to our hometown hero and visit The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden,” Kay Simpson, President and CEO of the Springfield Museums.

The Springfield Museums are working to get a Cat in the Hat license plate in production for Massachusetts drivers since 2018. A total of 750 applications are needed and they are 250 short of that goal. To apply, visit springfieldmuseums.org/seuss-plate.

“We are 250 applications short of our goal,” said Emilie Czupryna, Director of Development. “We are offering extra incentives during our Seuss-iversary year, including Love Dr. Seuss lawn flags for all who apply using their credit card. We are truly hopeful this year will see us to our goal, and we will get those plates on the road.”

“We are grateful to all applicants who are staying with us. The greatest part about the plate is that it has a potential for bringing $50,000 a year to the Museums in support of our literacy programming,” Czypryna said.