Zany children's author Dr Seuss had a famed collection of wacky and wonderful hats all of his own which helped inspired the famous headwear of his best-loved character - the Cat in the Hat.

The writer - real name Theodor Seuss Geisel - had a hoard of hundreds of hats in all shapes and sizes which he would often wear at dinner parties and would also don while hard at work writing.

In honour of the 75th anniversary of the publication of one of his most famous books, 'The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins', the never-before-seen headgear collection is now being exhibited at the New York Public Library, at the Children's Center on 42nd St in Manhattan.

Earlier this week, a suitably Seuss-themed world record was attempted to mark the opening of the exhibition, along with the announcement of a new charitable partnership between Random House Children's Books, Dr. Seuss Enterprises, and the Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation called "Hats off to Hope!" which aims to support children battling cancer.

Kids from surrounding schools travelled to the New York Public Library on Monday in a bid to set a new world record for "Most People Wearing Cat in the Hat Hats".

A minimum of 250 participants wearing red and white Dr. Seuss-style stovepipe hats was required to achieve a new record, with Guinness World Records adjudicator Stuart Claxton on hand to oversee the attempt.

In the end, a record-setting total of 281 be-hatted children sat entertained as four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon read Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You?, his favourite Dr. Seuss book.

The Hats Off to Dr. Seuss! exhibition will be at the New York Public Library until February 11, before touring the US throughout 2013.

To find out more about Hats Off to Hope!, head to