Why is Read Across America and Dr. Seuss celebrated on March 2?

Because Dr. Seuss was born on March 2, 1904, in Springfield, Massachusetts. His full name was Theodor Seuss Geisel. He wasn’t always known as Dr. Seuss. His friends and family knew his as “Ted.” Seuss was his mother’s maiden name. It wasn’t until later in college when he began using “Seuss” to sign his creative works. This was his first pseudonym.

His mother often soothed her children by chanting rhymes that she remembered from her childhood in Germany. Dr. Seuss credits his mother for his love of rhymes.

Many of his books show illustrations of people, places and things that he remembers of his youthful years growing up in Springfield, Massachusetts until he went off to college at Dartmouth, then later to Oxford in England. You can learn more about Dr. Seuss.

I learned that he first started his professional career in advertising and as a cartoonist. World War II influenced his cartoons, which became more political in theme. Wanting to contribute to helping his country, he created animated war training films with director Frank Capra featuring Private Snafu.

A very important lesson Dr. Seuss can teach us all is to not give up. His first children’s book, And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street, was rejected 27 times before he could get it published!

Did you know that The Cat in the Hat was written as a first reader book? I didn’t. It has 225 first-reader words. What a fun book for a child to learn to read!

At the time of his death in 1991, Dr. Seuss had published 44 children’s books which have influenced the creative works of television specials, a Broadway show, and a movie.

If you visit Springfield, be sure to enjoy the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden displaying bronzed statues of some of your favorite Dr. Seuss characters.

I’m sure his legacy will continue for many generations to follow.