Theodor "Ted" Seuss Geisel

Hayden Severa

Dr. Seuss

"Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope and enables you to laugh at life's realities," Theodor Seuss Geisel.


Theodor Seuss Geisel was born on March 2, 1904 in Springfield Massachusetts to Robert and Henrietta Geisel.

  • His father and grandfather were brew masters while his mother stayed home with him and his sister.
  • His mother was a big influence on his books. She would always chant rhymes and sing songs.
  • During World War I, his family, as German immigrants, faced many social and financial struggles.
  • After the war, he resumed his comfortable childhood until he went to college.
  • He enjoyed school, except for math, and was a yearbook editor for his high school.
  • His father wanted him to do something in the medical field, but Theodor never found any interest in medicine.

Adult Life

Theodor Seuss Geisel had a comfortable childhood. As he got older, some problems started to arise.

  • He went to Dartmouth college, where he was the editor of their humor magazine.
  • He got removed from the magazine, however, when he and some of his friends threw a drinking party on the campus.
  • Because of not being able to edit the paper, he used 'Seuss' to sign his work, allowing him to continue being editor.
  • After he graduated, he went to Oxford University, where he would eventually drop out because studying to be a doctor was boring to him.
  • Soon after he met Helen Palmer, his first wife and also a children's book writer and illustrator.
  • He became a cartoonist to support him and his wife during the Great Depression. He made lots of political cartoons.
  • As World War II started, he made lots of animated training videos to help the armies.
  • Illustrated children's saying in a magazine.
  • After Helen Palmer died, he married a childhood friend, Audrey Stone Geisel, who will influence his books.

Starting As a Writer

Dr. Seuss didn't start out as a famous writer. He more than his fair share of struggles in the beginning.

  • His first book, 'I Think I Saw it on Mulberry Street' was rejected 27 times before it was finally published by Vanguard Press in December of 1937.
  • After having his book rejected so many times, he even thought of burning it and never trying again.
  • After his first book was published, he was asked to write a book with only 250 of the words most commonly used by kids.
  • 'Cat in the Hat' was written only using 220.


After a pretty rough start, Seuss goes on to write and illustrate 44 children's books.

  • Almost all of his books were translated into 15 languages with over 200 million copies sold.
  • 11 Broadway musicals were based off of his characters and books.
  • A feature-length motion picture was made from one of his stories.
  • 16 of his books are included on the '100 Top-Selling Hardcover Children's Books of All Time' in Publisher's Weekly.

Other Facts

  • Dr. Seuss was the first children's author to have something 'burp' in a story - 'Yertle the Turtle'
  • The first recorded use of the word 'nerd' was in another one of his stories.
  • He didn't have any kids. When asked if he wanted any he said "You make 'em, I'll amuse 'em!"
  • His widowed wife said that it might go as far as him being afraid of children.
  • Dr. Seuss wrote 'Green Eggs and Ham' on a bet that he couldn't write a book with less than 50 words.
Mini Bio: Dr. Seuss

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