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The Curious Case of the Disappearing Flags 3 Celebrate Dr. Seuss 4
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On March 2, Read Across America Day is celebrated by students, teachers, and community members in towns throughout the country. They chose that date to pay homage to one of the most beloved children’s authors who was born that day: Theodor Geisel. That name may sound unfamiliar to you, but “Dr. Seuss” should ring a few bells. His name alone is so associated with literacy that in 2007, the author of an article in U.S. News & World Report that chronicled the history of 1957 — the year “The Cat in the Hat” was published — wrote, “Greece had Zeus — America has Seuss.” In 2001, Publisher’s Weekly released a list of the bestselling hardcover children’s books of all time in the U.S. Of the books in the top 100, Seuss authored 16, which is more than any other author on the list by a long shot.
But Seuss did not break into the children’s literature industry easily.
Seuss and his nearly 50 children’s books almost never got off the ground. His first children’s book, “And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street,” was denied by more than a dozen publishers. Legend has it that Seuss was on his way home to burn the manuscript when he ran into an old friend who suggested another publisher. The rest is history. Given the enthusiasm for reading Dr. Seuss has fostered in children for the past eight decades, it’s no wonder the National Education Association chose his birthday to mark a day dedicated to celebrating reading. After all, he’s often quoted as saying, “You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read with a child.”
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