Overdue library book finally returned after more than 100 years

Overdue library book finally returned after more than 100 years

The book was first checked out in 1919 (Picture: AP)

A library book that was more than a century overdue has finally been returned to the shelves in a US library.

The copy of Titled Famous Composers was checked out from the public library in St Paul, Minnesota, way back in 1919.

Featuring the likes of Bach and Mozart, the book turned up while someone was sorting through a relative’s belongings.

St Paul’s Mayor Melvin Carter joked in a tweet on Saturday that there would be no fine – as the library, like many in the US, stopped charging late fees.

John Larson, the St Paul Public Library’s digital library co-ordinator, said he doubted it will go back into circulation because of its delicate condition, but expected the library to hang on to it.

He said: ‘It has reached a point where it’s not just an old book, it’s an artefact. It has a little bit of history to it.’

Mr Larson said it was the oldest book he had ever seen returned in his 25 years working for the library.

‘There’s been a time or two when something has come back and maybe it has been checked out for 20 or 30 years, but nothing where it looks like it has been out for some 100 years,’ he said.

One man in Canada returned a book to his local library more than 37 years late – and said he never even read it.

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