This book was borrowed from the Courtenay library 30 years ago and was only recently returned to the Prince George library

This book was borrowed from the Courtenay library 30 years ago and was only recently returned to the Prince George library

Book returned 30 years later

$100 enclosed to cover late fees from overdue library book

A book borrowed from the Courtenay library 30 years ago is now making its way back to its rightful home after being dropped off at the Prince George Public Library.

“It’s very unusual for a book to be returned after such a long period of time,” said Courtenay library manager Colleen Nelson, who was waiting for the book to arrive as of Friday. “We often get things back after a year or a little bit longer than that but this is the longest (overdue) item I’ve ever had returned.”

Camping and Woodcraft by Horace Kephart was dropped off at the Prince George library with a note saying it was checked out of the Courtenay branch of Vancouver Island Regional Library 30 years ago. Also enclosed was $100 cash to pay for shipping back to Courtenay and cover any late fines incurred. A man’s name and contact information were also included — though Prince George library had been unable to reach him as of Friday — and the man said he would follow up to ensure the book reached its destination.

According to Nelson, there’s no way of knowing exactly when the book was checked out.

“We switched over from paper records to digital records in the mid-90s and so I don’t have access to the old information,” she said.

She noted late fines are normally 30 cents per day to a maximum of $10, and if the book is returned in a condition unfit for circulation — which this one was — the replacement cost of the book can be charged, too. Nelson said the cash is more than enough to cover the fees and shipping.

Though not suitable for circulation, “It’s something we’ll probably keep in branch because it’s so unusual,” said Nelson. “We haven’t decided quite yet what we’re going to do with it, where we’re going to put it … We might put it out (on display) for a little while so that people can have a look.”

As well, Nelson said the money that came with the book will be considered a donation, and she wants some input from the man who dropped it off to see how he would like the donation spent.

As of Friday, Nelson couldn’t say when the book would get to Courtenay, but she noted library staff are eagerly awaiting its arrival.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Gp Vanier in Courtenay. Circa 2018. Photo courtesy Comox Valley Schools
Another COVID exposure alert for Vanier Secondary in Courtenay

Island Health has sent another exposure alert to parents of students attending… Continue reading

“Of Bears at Fridges, drinking Planes and Cinderella’s Shoe” is Jordis Trumby’s first children’s book. Photo supplied.
Courtenay author writes, illustrates first children’s book

When is a collaboration not a collaboration? At first glance, Courtenay author… Continue reading

The 5th Street Bridge requires structural improvements, new coating to repair and prevent corrosion, and deck repairs. File photo
City of Courtenay awards contract for 5th Street Bridge project

The City of Courtenay has awarded the contract for the rehabilitation of… Continue reading

Pumpjacks pump crude oil near Halkirk, Alta., June 20, 2007.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal
Gas prices jump in the Valley – and experts predict prices to rise even more

“We still could be talking about record prices…”

NIC Practical Nursing instructor Barb McPherson (right) is pictured with student Rebecca Wood in 2018 in NIC’s SIM lab. NIC photo
Learn about Practical Nursing opportunities for Island students

Students interested in exploring a future in health care are invited to… Continue reading

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

COVID-19 vaccines were available at a site on East Pender in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside Feb. 25. (Twitter/Sarahblyth17)
Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside residents offered $5 after getting COVID-19 vaccine

It’s an effort to ‘incentivize people to engage,’ says B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix

A survey by Statistics Canada finds Black Canadians earn less than non-visible minority Canadians despite having higher levels of education. (The Canadian Press file photo)
COVID-19 worsened unemployment picture for Black Canadians

Black Canadians also more likely to suffer other hardships

(Black Press Media files)
B.C. teacher transferred then suspended after students report feeling ‘scared, nervous’

Authorities found that teacher did not create inviting, respectful environment for students

Victoria’s Swartz Bay terminal. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries offers cheaper, prepaid fare options

Ferry service preparing for busy terminals when travel restrictions are lifted

FILE - Dolly Parton arrives at the 61st annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 10, 2019, in Los Angeles. The Grammy-winning singer, actor and humanitarian posted a video on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, of her singing just before getting her COVID-19 vaccine shot. Parton donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee for coronavirus research. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
‘Vaccine, vaccine’: Dolly sings ‘Jolene’ rewrite before shot

The Grammy-winning legend turned 75 this year

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland speaks about the Fiscal update during a news conference in Ottawa, Monday November 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
COVID-19: Wage and rent subsidies, lockdown support to be extended until June

Chrystia Freeland says now is not time to lower levels of support

The area on Cordova Bay Road where ancestral human remains were discovered Feb. 22. (Submitted photo)
Human remains discovery a reminder of B.C. Indigenous culture dug up and displaced

‘These are the people who inspired and birthed the generations that we now have here’

Most Read