It's returned after 55 years
It may be the most overdue library book ever – 55 years late, according to officials at the New York Public Library. But as the Daily News reports, the delinquent borrower did the right thing, returning the book this week wrapped in a plain brown envelope with a check for $100 tucked inside, for all those late fees.
The copy of “Fire of Francis Xavier” was checked out of the Fort Washington branch library in upper Manhattan on April 10, 1958, according to the old-fashioned check-out card tucked in the book’s flap. Library officials say their records don’t go back to 1958, so they can’t say who borrowed the book more than five decades ago.
The library won’t release the name on the $100 check. But officials say the check more than covers any fines.
It must have been a good read, to keep the book for 55 years. Written by Arthur R. McGratty, it is the biography of the 16thCentury Jesuit missionary and Catholic saint Francis Xavier. He is considered to be a patron saint of Roman Catholic missionaries in foreign lands.
But the anonymous borrower could have gotten the book more cheaply than $100. A copy goes for $48.95 on Amazon, plus it’s eligible for free super saver shipping. A seller on ebay is offering a 1stedition of the 295-page tome for $32, guaranteed in “very fine condition.”