Seventy-six years ago today Dr. Seuss’s first book, “And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street” was published.
After a 27th publisher rejected his first manuscript “And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street,” Theodor Geisel considered burning the book in his apartment incinerator. As he walked dejectedly along Madison Avenue in New York City, he bumped into Dartmouth friend Mike McClintock. McClintock was brimming with some very good news. That morning he started a new job as an editor with Vanguard Press in the children’s section.
When Geisel told his sad story, the new editor took the manuscript and said, “I’ll publish it!”
“Don’t you want to read it first?” Geisel asked incredulously.
“It wouldn’t make any difference,” the editor replied.
“Heck, I don’t know anything about children’s books.”
Vanguard published the book in 1937 and launched the extraordinary career of Dr. Seuss. “If I had been going down the other side of Madison Avenue, I’d be in the dry-cleaning business today,” Geisel later said.
Related articles And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street