Book Returned 70 Years Late to Berkeley Library

Berkeley Library employees were surprised Friday after receiving an overdue book – 70 years past due.

Jean Durham said she was cleaning out her study when she found the book, Walter Scott’s narrative poem “Lady of the Lake.” Her mother had checked it out in 1945.

“The daughter, who is now retired, used Berkeley Public Library as a teenager, so this is something that she felt was her duty and responsibility to ensure that we got our material back, even if it took 70 years,” said a library employee.

There was never the threat of a fine because Berkeley’s library doesn’t charge for overdue books.

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