Dr. Seuss: The Maddest of Mad Men?

During the 1930s and ’40s, before Theodore Geisel was Dr. Seuss, he was Don Draper. A “mad man” from Madison Avenue, Geisel began his career concocting and drawing remarkable ads for America’s largest companies.

Lucky for us, the University of California, San Diego, has collected some of his pre-Seuss work. In ads for NBC, General Electric, and Ford, to name a few, one can see the progenitors of Cat in the Hat, The Grinch, Things One through a thousand, and many of his other famous creations.

The work is not only historical, it’s hysterical. For example: The picture here is an ad for Flit, a mosquito repellent. Check out those expressions!

(From the Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230, Mandeville Special Collections Library, UCSD.)

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Some people like to travel by train because 
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I think my pilot was a little inexperienced. We were sitting on the runway, and he said, “OK, folks, we’re gonna be taking off in a just few—whoa! Here we go.”

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“I can’t wait until your vacation is over.” 
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A man knocked on my door and asked for a donation toward the local swimming pool. So I gave him a glass of water.

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Q: What do you call an Amish guy with his hand in a horse’s mouth?

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