120 Years of Dr. Seuss

Posted on March 1, 2024

by Sam P

2024 marks what would have been Theodor Seuss Geisel’s 120th birthday. Born in 1904, the acclaimed children’s book illustrator and rhyming aficionado is better known by his pen name, Dr. Seuss. Author and illustrator of over 60 children’s books, his cadence and art style are recognized worldwide and have even been translated into more than twenty languages. While we can appreciate his talent and the way his work transformed the reading landscape, it is also okay– and even encouraged– to acknowledge his past. In 2021, The Seuss Foundation announced its decision to retire several titles that depicted negative stereotypes of marginalized groups. Around the same time, several other organizations also reported stepping back from their support of the late author. The decision to do so added to the dialogue surrounding censorship as well as that of being inclusive. Similarly, Toledo Lucas County Public Library has also reckoned with Seuss’ work. When visiting Main Library in Downtown Toledo, be sure to visit our Children’s Library. You will come across a pastel wall of Whooville-esque curves, frames, and cases decorated with original Seuss artwork and paraphernalia, and a small collection of his original critters referred to as his Collection of Unorthodox Taxidermy. That being said, as an institution that wants to welcome the community, we also recognize Seuss’ history as a political cartoonist and how some of his stories– allegorical or otherwise– were not always the most welcoming, and we display such a statement on the wall.

Here you will find some classic Dr. Seuss titles, including one he wrote as an apology for his previous illustrations. Alongside them are newer, non-fiction titles presented by The Cat in the Hat himself under Seussville’s Learning Library to educate all kids on many different topics.

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