Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss) Attends Dartmouth College
Despite the fact that he had made no overtures to any of the fraternities, Ted was nonetheless surprised to not be invited by any of them to pledge.
He realized that it was probably because he was taken to be Jewish, with his last name, Semitic nose and dark hair. This was in counterpoint to the hostile atmosphere that pervaded Springfield (and all of the U.S.) during the war as all German-Americans were looked at with suspicion by their former friends, business associates and neighbors. Ted felt the isolation during the war years, and found it continuing, though for different (and rather ironic) reasons at Dartmouth. "It took a year and a half before word got around that I wasn't [Jewish]. I think my interest in editing the Dartmouth humor magazine began...that pledge week."
While at Dartmouth, Geisel was caught drinking gin with nine friends in his room, violating national Prohibition laws of the time. As a result, the school insisted that he resign from all extracurricular activities, including the college humor magazine. In order to continue his work on the Jack-O-Lantern without the administration's knowledge, Geisel began signing his work with the pen name "Seuss;" his first work signed as "Dr. Seuss" appeared after he graduated, six months into his work for humor magazine The Judge where his weekly feature Birdsies and Beasties appeared. Geisel was encouraged in his writing by professor of rhetoric W. Benfield Pressey, whom he described as his "big inspiration for writing" at Dartmouth.