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George Washington's library book returned 221 years late
A library book borrowed by the first U.S. president, George Washington, has been returned to a New York City's oldest library, 221 years late. "A few days after learning of the situation, staff at Washington's home in Virginia, Mount Vernon, offered to replace Vattel's "Law of Nations" with another copy of the same edition," the library said in a statement.
He may have never told a lie, but George Washington apparently had no problem stiffing a Manhattan library on two books.
Two centuries ago, the nation's first President borrowed two tomes from the New York Society Library on Manhattan's Upper East Side (New York City being the Nation's Capital at the time) and never returned them, racking up an inflation-adjusted $300,000 late fee.
But Washington can rest easy. "We're not actively pursuing the overdue fines," quipped head librarian Mark Bartlett. "But we would be very happy if we were able to get the books back." Washington's dastardly deed went unknown for almost 150 years.
Galveston Daily News/ LA MARQUE TX — Kathy Nixie still is the librarian in La Marque. At least for now.
Nixie supporters claim the four-year veteran head of the La Marque Library was told by city administrators she had to resign Wednesday or be fired but was given no reason why she was being forced out.
That turmoil came less than a month after Nixie reported to a city council member that Councilwoman Connie Trube had demanded records about an overdue book fine owed by Mayor Pro Tem Keith Bell’s wife.
Nixie refused to talk about discussions she had with City Manager Eric Gage or finance Director Karen Cooper, except to say she had not been fired or forced to resign.
Asked why supporters thought she was being forced out, Nixie said: “I think it would get me in more trouble if I talked to you.”
But Barbara Sheppard, a critic of Gage and a Nixie supporter, said earlier in the day Wednesday Nixie told her Gage and Cooper had called in members of the library staff one by one to question them about Nixie’s performance.
“They then told (Nixie) that she obviously wasn’t happy working for the city of La Marque and that she had a choice, resign or be fired by 4:30 that afternoon,” Sheppard said.
Overdue DVD Lands Colo. Teen In Jail
A Colorado teen was recently arrested after he checked out a DVD from a library and forgot to return it, Denver TV station KMGH reported.
He claims it was an honest mistake, saying he checked out the DVD and then inadvertently packed it while moving.
New and Creative Leniency for Overdue Library Books:
Bruce sent this one over from the NYT: "Since the beginning of the economic downturn, librarians across the country have speculated that fines for overdue items are keeping people from using the library — particularly large families whose children take out (and forget to return) many books at a time. Some libraries learned that the fines, which are often as low as 25 cents an item per day, quickly multiplied for many people and were becoming an added hardship."
The book, 'Facts I Ought to Know About the Government of My Country', was handed in to the library at New Bedford, MA this week by 75-year-old Stanley Dudek. The library has waived the one-cent-a-day fine on the book, which would have amounted to $363. The book was found among the belongings of Dudek's mother, who emigrated to the U.S. from Poland in the early 20th century.
Dudek, who had recently read in the paper about a book returned sixty years late commented "I have 40 years on that guy."
Read more here.
Overdue library books returned half century later
A high school librarian in Phoenix says a former student at the school returned two overdue books checked out 51 years ago along with a $1,000 money order to cover the fines.
Camelback High School librarian Georgette Bordine says the two Audubon Society books checked out in 1959 and the money order were sent by someone who wanted to remain anonymous.
Oct. 25th blog post, www.merrylibrarian.com
Book drops. It seems simple, doesn’t it? A name like “book drop” doesn’t leave much room for mystery…you’d think.
A recent poll of librarians has proven otherwise, however. Across the nation, patrons of public libraries have confused a book drop with trash receptacles, a donation box, urinals, chicken coops… The list goes on and on.
While we may never understand how or why this confusion occurs, we do know that the result of patron confusion–though sometimes disturbing–is frequently amusing. So, until the government provides libraries with several billion dollars to launch an education campaign on proper book drop use, we have taken it upon ourselves to provide you with this useful list of book drop dos and don’ts–all based on the true stories that have been sent in from around the world.
1. Situation: You work at a library in the city of Las Vegas, NV. As you approach the book drop, you hear the sound of squawking and scratching.
Don’t…Assume you’re crazy. You may be miles from the nearest farm, but there actually are chickens in your book drop…complete with food and water. Hey, it happens.
Do… Tell your coworkers to fire up the bar-be-que, baby!
2. Situation: Upon opening the book drop, you are pummeled by the stench of garbage. And on top of the rubbish heap in your book drop? A used maxi pad.
Don’t…Toss your cookies into the book drop. You’d only have to clean that up, too. -- Read More
It's clamp down time at the Seattle Public Library. The Board of Trustees voted unanimously Wednesday to impose overdue fines on previously exempt childrens books and English-as-a-second-language materials, charge a $5 fee for interlibrary loans and limit the number of materials a user can check out and place holds on.
Fines on previously exempt materials, which will remain exempt until changes start Oct. 15, are expected to bring an added $36,000 in annual revenue. City Librarian Susan Hildreth said the decision was not done to raise revenue, but to help staffers maintain their workload and keep materials in circulation.
The Seattle PI article goes on to quote some library users who are very unhappy about the proposed changes.
San Francisco Public Library has released a great series of short videos called "Celebrity Excuses" to promote their Fine Amnesty Period (May 3-May 16). Among others, videos feature writer Beth Lisick, comedian Marga Gomez, and pilot "Sully" Sullenberger, who says, "You've misplaced your library book. Perhaps you've just forgotten to return it until it's late and you owe fines. Or maybe you're just trying to think of a really, really good excuse like 'It got lost in the Hudson River.'"