Dr. Seuss His Legacy

Dr. Seuss' real name was Theodore (Ted) Geisel. His Bavarian mother's maiden name was Suess. After losing his college's magazine editor position, he began publishing cartoons under psydonyms. In 1927, he stuck with the name, "Dr. Seuss."

Ted Geisel considered starting his doctorate at Oxford, but found he simply wanted to draw instead.

He became a cartoonist in the United States and landed his first major break in advertising through an insecticide firm. He became wildly popular and eventually went on to advertise for companies such as NBC, Ford, and General Electric.

Suess created cartoon and advertisements to start his career.

Dr. Seuss and his first wife were not able to have children so his common phrase to others with children was "You make em' and I'll amuse em'!" With his unique characters and rhyming, he was turned down by countless publishers. He ran into a former classmate who worked for a press company and signed his first published book, Mulberry Street.

Dr. Seuss published more than 60 different children's books over the course of his life.

During World War II, Dr. Seuss initially put aside writing children's books to take up creating political cartoons for New York's newspaper PM. As he saw it, war was inevitable so he wanted to make sure America was ready. His creations mocked the leaders of the Axis powers such as Hitler and discouraged discrimination when such oppression was extremely accepted and normal. At times, he drew from his own experience of discrimination from when he was young. His grandparents came from Germany so he had physical attributes of that ethnicities and received criticism for it.

He traveled to Japan in the 50s and this inspired his famous book, Horton Hears a Who (1954). The Whos represent the people of Japan that had been bombed by the atomic bombs. A famous line from this book states, "a person's a person no matter how small" which ties directly to minority groups that were experiencing oppression at this time of turmoil around the world. He also wrote Yurtle the Turtle in 1958 to represent the tyranny of Hitler and his men during the war.

World War II was a monumental moment in our courtry's history and influence many of the following Seuss books.

Dr. Seuss drew inspiration and ideas from everything, but in a few instances, he found it in himself for the characters the Cat in the Hat and the Grinch.

He was concerned that children were not learning to read and so-called boring stories such as Dick and Jane were part of the problem. He was asked to "write a story that first graders can't put down." He was asked to keep the book to a 225 vocabulary word limit. He decided the first two rhyming words he came across would be the title of the book so "cat" and "hat" were the words that made the cut. The book, published in 1957, sold more than a million copies in its first three years.

Suess said he was most proud of this book because it moved away from the traditional Dick and Jane primer books and onto more entertaining beginner books.

Suess' best selling book, Green Eggs and Ham, is a beginner book that has a vocabulary list of fewer than fifty words. His second best-seller is The Cat in the Hat followed by One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish (1960) and Hop on Pop (1963).

In 2001, Green Eggs and Ham was listed as No. 4 on the Publisher's Weekly list of best selling children's books of all time.
Character depictions of Dr. Seuss' stories.

Just before his passing, Seuss was asked what he wanted to say that he may have left unsaid and he stated, "The best slogan I can think of to leave with the kids of the U.S.A. would be ‘We can … and we’ve got to … do better than this."

Dr. Seuss gave us all a gift of imagination and creativity. He wanted children to learn to think and dream. He left behind a legacy that will go on for many many years. As said in his book, Oh the Places You'll Go, (1990), "Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So … get on your way!

Oh the Places You'll Go is a common high school and college graduation gift.
Created By
Laura Rankin


Created with images by india7network - "Dr. Seuss" • DariuszSankowski - "old retro antique" • r.nial.bradshaw - "colored-pencils-art.jpg" • byzantiumbooks - "Seven Books Up on Top" • expertinfantry - "Vietnam War" • samhsloan@gmail.com - "the-cat-in-the-hat-cover" • samhsloan@gmail.com - "green-eggs-and-ham-cover" • katerha - "Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss" • xJason.Rogersx - "The Lorax" • pat00139 - "Shannon, August 11, 2011" • Lisa Zins - "The Grinch and Max" • frankieleon - "tell me about it"

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