Making Mealtime Meaningful: Discover how we're giving back with the 12T Cares program →

As children, we go to the library and know without a shadow of a doubt that the books need to be returned on time. Although the library itself may be free, keeping a book beyond its due date will cost you.

Admittedly, most people are only going to pay a few dollars at most for an overdue book. That is unless you keep the book for 58 years.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Castle Street, Dudley by Brian Clift License: CC BY-SA 2.0

That is the experience that David Hickman had. According to the Expreess & Star, in 1964, he was only 17 years old when he went to the Dudley Library and checked out “The Law for Motorists.” According to the outlet, he checked out the book because he had an upcoming court visit for a minor traffic violation.

The problem is that he checked the book out in 1964 but never took it back. He kept the book even when he moved to London in 1970 but didn’t take it back to the library.

Photo: Pexels/Pixabay

Every once in a while, Hickman would come across the book and think of how he should take it back to the library when he was in Dudley. He was even going to post the book anonymously, but he decided to do the right thing and take it back to the library personally.

All in all, the book had racked up an overdue fee of $52,400. After all, it had been missing from the shelves for 58 years!

Photo: Pexels/Element5 Digital

When Hickman took the book back, the library manager, Sharon Whitehouse, decided to waive the fee. She was thrilled that the book was back in their possession and still had the original cardboard tickets.

They are thinking about donating the book to a local museum.