Green eggs and hammy birthday to Theodor Seuss Geisel, known as the popular author Dr. Seuss, who was born in 1904 and died in 1991 at age 87. He published more than 45 children's books during his lifetime, including "The Cat in the Hat," "The Grinch" and "The Lorax." Think of how many millions of children have learned to rhyme with Seuss all the time! Additionally, many people thought Theodor Seuss Geisel's stories contained subtle messages of Christian doctrine.
One of Geisel's most popular lines was: "Why fit in when you were born to stand out?" And, stand out, he did, because Dr. Seuss was concerned that the books used to teach kids were not interesting enough.
A grandson of German immigrants, Theodor was born in Springfield, Mass. Seuss was his mother's maiden name.
Dr. Seuss achieved early success writing and illustrating humorous advertisements for Flit, a bug spray manufactured by Standard Oil.
After a 27th publisher rejected his first manuscript, Dr. Seuss walked dejectedly along the sidewalks of New York, planning to burn the book in his apartment incinerator. On Madison Avenue, however, he bumped into Dartmouth friend Mike McClintock, who that very morning had started a job as an editor in the Vanguard Press children's section, according to the History Channel. Within hours, the men signed a contract, and in 1937 Vanguard Press published "And to Think that I Saw It on Mulberry Street," which launched the extraordinary literary career of Dr. Seuss.
Geisel somehow connected with young readers despite the fact that he never had any biological children. His first wife, Helen, was unable to bear children, and he did not father any children with second wife Audrey, though he was a stepfather to her two daughters. When Dr. Seuss was asked how he could connect with children in spite of not having his own, his stock answer was, "You have 'em, and I'll entertain 'em."
Last July, a new book of his was released, 24 years after his death. "What Pet Should I Get?" was discovered in November 2013 while the author's widow, Audrey Geisel, was going through boxes of old material in their California home. Cathy Goldsmith, the author's former art director, has said "What Pet Should I Get?" was probably written between 1958 and 1962.
Geisels' former secretary, Claudia Prescott, who worked for them since 1972, said the author had many unfinished ideas, not all of which resulted in books.
"He called it the bone pile - he'd go and take something out of the bone pile," she said.
More than 650 million copies of Dr. Seuss' works have been sold worldwide.
If he were still alive on the anniversary of his birth, he would leave us with: "Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one."