WATCH: Wilderness Living was signed out from the Courtenay Library in April 1977 and returned last weekend.
The Courtenay library was across town back in 1977 but a book that was signed out in April of that year has finally made its way back to where it belongs.
“We get books that have been overdue for a couple or three years but nothing of that vintage,” said Library Assistant Anne Judson at the Courtenay branch.
Judson found a book in the book return Monday that was four decades overdue.
“Generally what we do is we just pull the books out of the book drop and place them on the counter and start checking them in. When I picked this book up there was no barcode and inside was the old-fashioned pocket with the paper card in it, with the dates from the 70s.”
The book is called Wilderness Living: A Complete Handbook and Guide to Pioneering in North America by Berndt Berglund, ‘A complete Handbook and Guide to Pioneering in North America’.
But it was now 42 years overdue and the person who had it faced a possible fine of over $4,500. That might explain why it was dropped off in the outside drop box sometime over the weekend, anonymously.
“We didn’t have a computer system back at that point, no barcoding and it was dropped into the book drop anonymously, so we have no idea who had it all this time,” said Librarian Allison Trumble. “It would be great to know if anybody out there has any more information about the book, we would love to know a little bit more.”
Vancouver Island Regional Library has a maximum fine of $10 and staff say that probably would’ve been waived.
“All is absolved at this point, we do have a limit on how long we keep track of things and 42 years is well past that limit,” said Trumble.
The Vancouver Island Regional Library is now having a contest on its Facebook page. You can write a tale about where you think the book has been for the last 42 years.