Quick, Henry, the Flit! Ad for insect repellent by Dr. Seuss

Theodore Seuss Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, created illustrations for ads before he illustrated children’s books. Fast Company has a slideshow featuring a sampling of his ad work.

Seuss became the father of the modern day children’s stories not solely through his inventive lexicon molded into clever syntax and anapestic meter, but also through vivid imaginary worlds and the charming characters within them. Take one look at his early creations for brands including GE, Ford, and NBC, and there’s no denying the framework of his style that would later turn into the denizens of Whoville, Cat in the Hat and Fox in Socks. And, according to the keepers of the Seuss collection at the UC San Diego Library, the enduring brilliance that is Seuss’ legacy can be traced back to a very unlikely source: bug spray.

Author: Jon Lebkowsky

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