Acclaimed writer Dr. Seuss was born Theodor Geisel in Springfield, Massachusetts on March 2, 1904. Dr. Seuss' first children's book, And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street, hit the market in 1937, changing the face of children's literature forever. It was rejected 27 times before it was finally published by Vanguard Press in 1937.
Following the war, Geisel and his first wife Helen moved to La Jolla, California, where he wrote and published several children's books in the coming years, including If I Ran the Zoo and Horton Hears a Who! A major turning point in Geisel's career came when, in response to a 1954 Life magazine article that criticized children's reading levels, Houghton Mifflin and Random House asked him to write a children's primer using 220 vocabulary words. The resulting book, The Cat in the Hat, was published in 1957 and was described by one critic as a "tour de force." The success of The Cat in the Hat cemented Geisel's place in children's literature.
In the years that followed, Geisel wrote many more books, both in his new simplified-vocabulary style and using his older, more elaborate technique, and including such favorites as Green Eggs and Ham and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. In 1966, with the help of eminent cartoonist Chuck Jones, The Grinch was adapted into an animated film.
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1984 and three Academy Awards, Seuss overall was the author and illustrator of 44 children's books, some of which have been made into audiocassettes, animated television specials, and videos for children of all ages.