75 years later, a New Jersey man brings a borrowed book to his local library.


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The Hudson Reporter observed this week that Bob Jablonski of Jersey City, New Jersey, was just 14 years old in 1947 when he borrowed the book “Hitler” by Oden Rudolph from the James J. Ferris High School section of the Jersey City Free Public Library.

75 years later, at the age of 89, to be precise, Jablonski gave the book back to the library.

For a quick point of comparison, the transistor was invented by Bell Laboratories in 1947, Jackie Robinson became the first African-American to play in Major League Baseball, and Princess Elizabeth of England announced her engagement to Lt. Philip Mountbatten. Jablonski borrowed the book at the same time.

Jablonski informed the Reporter that he discovered the book while cleaning his home.
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The book was seemingly undamaged when he gave it back.
The Reporter claimed that it even has its original reference card tucked within.

Bob Jablonski, who grew up in Jersey City, N.J., returned a book to a library 75 years after he first took it out.

The Reporter noted that Jablonski “can not recall the exact circumstances” of his visit back in 1947, adding that staff “were anxiously curious to inspect the books condition and understand more about Jablonskis library experience in 1947.”

What kind of late fee was necessary for a book that was overdue by 75 years?
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In actuality, the Jersey City Free Public Library got rid of late fees in February 2021, which was more than a year ago.

The library’s director, Jeffrey Trzeciak, said in a statement last year when announcing the change, “The burdens of the fines placed on our patrons are significant, and we recognize overdue fines are a form of social inequity, which creates barriers to accessing library services, often for those who need it most.”

“We anticipate that the library’s elimination of fines would encourage more community attendance.”

According to NJ.com at the time, by eliminating late-book fines, the Jersey City library became the largest fine- and fee-free institution in the Garden State, and hundreds of library systems nationwide had “already made the move.”

Late fees were likewise abolished at the New York Public Library in New York City last year.
“We are happy to remove obstacles that might deter customers from entering our doors.”
The company told Fox News Digital that it was “great to see customers at branches around the country returning their overdue items.”

The New York Public Library stated that after late fees were dropped in 2017 there has been an increase in returns with original due dates spanning decades.

The organization continued, “We’re pleased to remove hurdles that might hinder customers from walking through our doors as our purpose is to foster lifelong learning.”

"When someone returns a book that they have borrowed from the library after two weeks or after 75 years, that is social responsibility in action," said Kerry Ward of the American Library Association.

The American Library Association (ALA), headquartered in Chicago, also weighed in on the N.J. book return many decades after its due date.

“What is wonderful about libraries is that they both evidence and test our collective sense of social responsibility, the idea of give and take, the sense of reciprocity that resides in all of us,” Tracie D. Hall, executive director of the American Library Association, told Fox News Digital via email.

“Recognizing that what genuinely makes this book, movie, or laptop valuable is that it belongs not to me but to all of us” was the act behind the book return.

“That is social responsibility in action,” Hall continued, “when someone returns a book that they have taken from the library after two weeks or after 75 years.”

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Jablonski returning the book was an act of “recognizing that what genuinely makes this book, movie, or laptop special is that it belongs not to me, but to all of us,” according to Hall.

Jablonski evidently isn’t the only person who recently gave a library a long-overdue book.
A different person returned a book to a library 48 years after it was supposed to.
See the tweet that explains the book boomerang immediately below.
According to the tweet immediately below, a customer in Philadelphia recently “returned a book due in February of 1978.”
Several persons who had firsthand experience with overdue books offered their opinions.
Former volunteer public school librarian Jean Purcell of Columbia, Maryland, told Fox News Digital that it’s “never too late” to return a late library book.
According to her, paying up the return—even if there is a late fee—would be worthwhile given the associated sense of guilt relief.
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Just imagine how relieved you’ll feel once the book is returned and your charge is paid, she advised. When you come across an overdue book, you may experience a severe pang of guilt.

She added, “And someone else needs that book. Consider that.”

One librarian at a Boston-area elementary school called overdue books andquot;old friendsandquot; that they're happy to welcome back.

According to a Boston-area volunteer elementary school librarian, “Honestly, we’re just delighted to get a book back when it’s returned late.”

She said, “To us, they’re like old buddies.” For instance, I recall being ecstatic to see a Curious George book after a two-year absence!
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Another college student from North Carolina told Fox News Digital, “To be honest, if something happened to me, I would just avoid the library.” I’m sorry to say it, but that’s the reality.

At the conclusion of the school year, he continued, “My mom would make me bring all my overdue high school library books over. It was very embarrassing.”

Jablonski escaped a late fee for his years-overdue book, thanks to the Jersey City Free Public Library's new policy  ever since Feb. of 2021  in which no one pays late fee for overdue materials.

According to the website for The Guinness Book of World Records, $345.14 is the highest punishment ever imposed for a late library book.

The organization indicated that this was the sum due “at two cents a day” for the poetry book “Days and Deeds” that Emily Canellos-Simms borrowed from the Kewanee Public Library in Kewanee, Illinois, in April 1955.

Although the book was past due on April 19, 1955, Emily discovered it 47 years later and handed the library a cheque for the overdue charges, according to the website.