Overdue Books Finally Returned 52 Years Later 'I'll let you decide their fate now' By Newser Editors and Wire Services Posted Oct 16, 2015 6:46 PM CDT 13 comments Comments (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Portland State University librarians in Oregon finally got their hands on two overdue books—half a century after they were checked out. The Oregonian reports that someone put two books checked out in 1963 for a high-school speech class into a book drop, accompanied by an anonymous, handwritten note. The note acknowledges that the books are "outdated—yes—but I'll let you decide their fate now." University librarian Joan Petit tells the Oregonian the books are so old that staff members don't know what to do with them. In the time since they were borrowed, card catalogs have been digitized and classification methods have changed. But the librarians, who no longer charge late fees, say they are thankful that someone returned "Basic Principles of Speech" and "Preface to Critical Reading."