library 119 years later “This came back in extremely good condition," New Bedford Public Library Director Olivia Melo said Friday.
New Bedford Public Library Director Olivia Melo, pulls the 100 year overdue book from the box shipped to New Bedford, Mass., from West Virginia University Library on Friday, July 7, 2023.
"An Elementary Treatise on Electricity" by James Clerk Maxwell was returned to the West Virginia University library one hundred years after it was taken out of the New Bedford Public library in 1903.
It would take 119 years and the sharp eyes of a librarian in West Virginia before the scientific text finally found its way back to the Massachusetts library.
Plein found the treatise and noticed it had been part of the collection at the New Bedford library and, critically, had not been stamped “Withdrawn,” indicating that while extremely overdue, the book had not been discarded.
“This came back in extremely good condition,” New Bedford Public Library Director Olivia Melo said Friday.
At that rate, someone returning a book overdue by 119 years would face a hefty fee of more than $2,100. »