Overdue book returned to British library after 63 years
A library in England said a book was recently returned in the mail after 63 years with a note saying, “better late than never.”
Newcastle Libraries shared a photo on Facebook showing the copy of Darrell Huff’s How to Lie with Statistics that arrived in the mail after being checked out from the Central Library 63 years earlier.
Library officials said the book was accompanied with an anonymous note reading: “Better late than never! Apologies for the late return!”
Library Manager David Hepworth said the person who returned the overdue book did not identify themselves.
“They may have been worried about us sending them a bill,” he told the BBC.
Officials said the book would have accumulated $4,722.52 in fines at the current rate, if fees weren’t capped at about $20.
Hepworth said the person would have had to dodge other collection efforts in the decade after it was checked out.
“In those days, even up to the 70s, there was a library officer who would visit people’s houses to get books back,” Hepworth said. “Clearly we don’t do that anymore.”
Hepworth said the library is hoping the person who returned the book will come forward and identify themselves. He said officials do not want to collect any fines, but they want to reward the person with some free books from in-house publishing company Tyne Bridge.