Most people know the author Theodor Seuss Geisel by his pen name, Dr. Seuss. And most folks who know Dr. Seuss are well acquainted with his children's books -- 46 time-honored classics, which, despite their fantastical illustrations and imaginative situations, often carried poignant social messages.

But while Dr. Seuss may be best known for works like The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham, he was also a prolific political cartoonist during World War II. Penning editorial cartoons for the left-leaning New York newspaper PM from 1941 to 1943, Dr. Seuss covered the war from a unique angle that presented progressive opinions ornamented with entertaining flights of fancy.

According to the 1995 biography, Dr. Seuss & Mr. Geisel, Dr. Seuss "was haunted by the war in Europe." While he supported the war effort through his work, he also used his cartoons to convey social messages, fighting against racism and anti-semitism.

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The Mandeville Special Collections Library at the University of California, San Diego houses the original newspaper clippings of more than 400 cartoons that Dr. Seuss drew for PM, plus a series of war bonds advertisements that appeared in other publications.

While in-person viewing requires special permission due to the fragility of the documents, the entire gallery is available on the Dr. Seuss Collection website.

As i09 pointed out, "one does not expect to see the whimsical style of Dr. Seuss applied to real wartime figures," but the cartoons are as important a part of the author's oeuvre as his socially progressive works like The Lorax and The Butter Battle Book.

It wasn't uncommon for illustrators to align themselves with the war effort during the 1940s. In fact, this era, often called the Golden Age of comics, with its clearly drawn lines between "good" and "evil," helped define and give rise to the concept of the superhero.

While Dr. Seuss' political caricatures show some vestiges of the age -- his unflattering portrayal of Japan's Emperor Hirohito among them -- his progressive attitudes are sprinkled among the propaganda.

LOOK: The World War II Cartoons Of Dr. Seuss:

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  • The Wonders of Russian Science

    The Wonders of Russian Science, published by PM Magazine on January 16, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • The head eats... the rest gets milked

    The head eats... the rest gets milked, published by PM Magazine on May 19, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Remember, now... you can come up so high, but no higher!

    Remember, now... you can come up so high, but no higher!, published by PM Magazine on July 10, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • End of the line, sir. From here on you walk.

    End of the line, sir. From here on you walk., published by PM Magazine on July 7, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • When the punching bag socks the champ-That's NEWS

    When the punching bag socks the champ-That's NEWS, published by PM Magazine on May 14, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Sauerdrout Symphony

    Sauerdrout Symphony, published by PM Magazine on May 1, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • I don't like to brag, boys...

    I don't like to brag, boys... but when I bit Col. McCormick it established the greatest all-time itch on record!, published by PM Magazine on August 17, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • We could of. We would of. We should of.

    We could of. We would of. We should of., published by PM Magazine on July 15, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Hurry up with that ark

    Hurry up with that ark, published by PM Magazine on February 23, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Publik Notice: This bird is possessed of an evil demon!

    Publik Notice: This bird is possessed of an evil demon!, published by PM Magazine on September 22, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Spreading the lovely Goebbels stuff

    Spreading the lovely Goebbels stuff, published by PM Magazine on September 18, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Instead of the Stalingrad Victory Parade...

    Instead of the Stalingrad Victory Parade, originally scheduled for this time, we bring you a talk by Colonel Schmaltz of the Gestapo on his recent experiences in Norway!, published by PM Magazine on October 8, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Speaking of railroads... here's one to take over!

    Speaking of railroads... here's one to take over!, published by PM Magazine on March 24, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • What this country needs is a good mental insecticide

    What this country needs is a good mental insecticide, published by PM Magazine on June 11, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • He's a noisy little so-and-so, but, sweetheart, he's all ours!

    He's a noisy little so-and-so, but, sweetheart, he's all ours!, published by PM Magazine on October 22, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Knots in my tail...! The nerve of that MacArthur!

    Knots in my tail...! The nerve of that MacArthur!, published by PM Magazine on February 4, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Yeah...but who takes over when the big guy's time is up?

    Yeah...but who takes over when the big guy's time is up?, published by PM Magazine on February 6, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • I reject milk from Holstein cows as Non-Aryan

    I reject milk from Holstein cows as Non-Aryan, published by PM Magazine on January 21, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • STOP all U.S. Progress

    STOP all U.S. Progress, published by PM Magazine on October 24, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Giving the axis a lift

    Giving the axis a lift, published by PM Magazine on May 12, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • War work to be done

    War work to be done, published by PM Magazine on July 9, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Listen, maestro...

    Listen, maestro... if you want to get real harmony, use the black keys as well as the white!, published by PM Magazine on June 30, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • The Guy who makes a mock of democracy

    The Guy who makes a mock of democracy, published by PM Magazine on July 30, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • I'll run Democracy's War. You stay in your Jim Crow tanks!

    I'll run Democracy's War. You stay in your Jim Crow tanks!, published by PM Magazine on April 14, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Mighty Trapper... but he misses the big ones

    Mighty Trapper... but he misses the big ones, published by PM Magazine on March 10, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • The Appeaser

    The Appeaser, published by PM Magazine on June 16, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Sometimes I wonder...

    Sometimes I wonder -- would we speed things up if we used turtles instead of snails?, published by PM Magazine on May 4, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • It's a cinch, Adolf... Once you learn to play it

    It's a cinch, Adolf... Once you learn to play it, published by PM Magazine on November 10, 1941, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • I give the hotfoot to the stork that brings me

    I give the hotfoot to the stork that brings me, published by PM Magazine on January 20, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego

  • Sure an' one day while you celebrate...

    Sure an' one day while you celebrate the wearin' o' the green, I'll bring back snakes to Ireland on a Nazi submarine, published by PM Magazine on March 18, 1942, Dr. Seuss Collection, MSS 230. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UC San Diego