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College Student Finds Forgotten 1599 Bible

Geneva Bible sat in a box in college library

(Newser) - A curious college student has rediscovered a copy of what the Oregonian calls "one of the most historically significant Bibles ever published." Junior Sam Bussan had only been working as an archival assistant at Lewis & Clark College's Watzek Library in Portland for less than a month... More »

Man Arrested, Charged For Asking Controversial Question at KC Library

A library official is 'outraged'

(Newser) - The executive director of the Kansas City library system says he is "outraged" that prosecutors continue to pursue charges against a man who was arrested after asking pointed questions during a library discussion about the Middle East peace process and an employee who tried to intervene. Although the arrests... More »

Heroin Epidemic Checks Into America's Libraries

Quiet public spaces prove attractive for addicts, see spike in overdoses

(Newser) - The same qualities that make libraries ideal for studying and reading—unfettered public access, quiet corners and nooks, minimal interaction with other people—also make them appealing places to shoot up heroin, reports the AP in a look at the trend. In Norfolk, Va., a 47-year-old man died after a... More »

Library Could Start Jailing People for Overdue Books

'We're doing it for the community'

(Newser) - One Alabama library isn't messing around when it comes to overdue books. The News Courier reports the Athens-Limestone Public Library is going to start taking advantage of an old city ordinance that could lead to jail time for people who don't return their copy of Harry Potter. Library... More »

Ancient, Secret Library Gets a Facelift

University of al-Qarawiyyin library undergoing repairs

(Newser) - The settling dust from renovations and the banging of tools aren't ideal sights and sounds for a library—but this is no ordinary library. Founded 12 centuries ago in Fez, Morocco's University of al-Qarawiyyin library is one of the world's oldest, home to unique Islamic manuscripts treasured... More »

Michigan Couple Face Jail Over Late Dr. Seuss Book

They say it isn't criminal to take so long paying late fees

(Newser) - A Michigan husband and wife are beside themselves after having been warned they could face up to 93 days in jail and a $500 fine over two unreturned library books. It all started in the summer of 2014, when their son checked out a Dr. Seuss book for the couple'... More »

Library Recovers Stolen 400-Year-Old Map

'I'm proud it's been returned to its rightful home'

(Newser) - A centuries-old map compiled by French explorer Samuel de Champlain and believed to be among dozens stolen more than a decade ago from the Boston Public Library has been recovered, library officials said Friday. The map, compiled in 1612, was found at a New York City arts dealer, where it... More »

Overdue Books Finally Returned 52 Years Later

'I'll let you decide their fate now'

(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... More »

Vet, 75, Saves Kids From Knife-Wielding Attacker

He used his 50-year-old training to disarm man allegedly bent on killing children

(Newser) - A 75-year-old veteran used his Army knife-fight training to stop a man armed with two hunting knives from going after a roomful of children Tuesday at an Illinois public library, the Pekin Daily Times reports. Sixteen children were getting a chess lesson from James Vernon in a room at the... More »

Boston Library Learns More Than Art Has Gone Missing

Investigation was launched into Rembrandt, Durer works last month

(Newser) - Apparently more than just valuable artwork is missing from the Boston Public Library's archives. A library spokeswoman says a retired employee who now volunteers told administrators last week that gold coins originally placed in the cornerstone of the main building have been missing for decades. The spokeswoman says the... More »

ISIS Torches Mosul's Ancient Books

Hundreds more Christians kidnapped in Syria

(Newser) - There are more ways than one to be barbaric, ISIS has demonstrated in Mosul. The militants, who seized the Iraqi city in June last year, have trashed its libraries and, by one estimate, have burned or otherwise destroyed more than 100,000 volumes, some of them rare and ancient, the... More »

High School Library Book Returned 65 Years Late

$470 fine waived for 'Gone With the Wind'

(Newser) - If Betty Mandershied is still alive, she no longer needs to worry about a huge library fine waiting for her—although frankly, she may not give a damn. The copy of Gone With the Wind she checked out of a high school library in Spokane, Wash., in early 1949 has... More »

City Shuts Down Boy's Free Library on His Front Lawn

9-year-old plans to fight City Hall in Leawood, Kansas

(Newser) - A little city in Kansas is getting some bad press nationally because it forced a boy and his family to take down a small community book shelf in their front yard on Wednesday. Officials in the Kansas City suburb of Leawood say they had no choice but to order the... More »

Harvard Book Is Indeed Bound in Human Skin

French poet gave book to friend

(Newser) - Harvard has confirmed a creepy find in its Houghton Library: A 19th-century book about the soul is bound in human skin. Tests revealed that French poet's Arsène Houssaye’s Des Destinées de l'AmeThe Destiny of the Soul—really does have a human binding, backing up... More »

Vatican Library to Unveil Millions of Pages Online

And they'll be free to view

(Newser) - Today, viewing one of the Vatican Apostolic Library's 82,000 manuscripts—some almost 2,000 years old—requires a scholarly application and a trip to the Vatican. Until now, allowing just anyone to see the documents "would be like putting a child with a paintbrush in front of... More »

Library Book Returned... After 21 Years

Cookbook borrowed from Kansas library in 1992

(Newser) - More than two decades after a cookbook was checked out of a Kansas library, it's just now been returned. A copy of The Versatile Grain and the Elegant Bean: A Celebration of the World's Most Healthful Foods was placed in a Lawrence Public Library return box one night... More »

Guy Jailed ... for Overdue Library Book

Well, it worked: The book has been returned

(Newser) - A Texas man found himself booked into jail last week ... and all because of an overdue library book. According to court documents, Jory Enck checked out a GED study guide in 2010 and never responded to the library when it tried to get the book back from him. He was... More »

Uber-Rare Books Pilfered by Librarian Head Home

National librarian spent years secretly grabbing 56 tomes

(Newser) - After a librarian quietly stole rare books from Sweden's National Library, two of them turned up at a bookstore in Baltimore; now, Sweden is finally getting them back. But the Kungliga Biblioteket has a long way to go: Senior librarian Anders Burius spent a decade stealing 56 "rare... More »

$500K Fire Set by... Aspiring Firefighter

Joseph Brannen, 18, admits to arson

(Newser) - Firefighters who turned up to battle flames at a Florida library found a guy in firefighting gear was already on the scene. They asked Joseph Brannen, 18, where he'd gotten his protective clothing; he said he bought it on eBay, officials say. He added that he'd heard the... More »

Libraries Lend Tools, Drums, Telescopes, Fishing Poles...

Libraries: not just for books anymore

(Newser) - Books and DVDs weren't what Ralph Mandarino wanted when he went to the Grosse Pointe Public Library. The 75-year-old retired businessman checked out a tree lopper and a tape measure, two of the more than 100 tools available to patrons of the suburban Detroit library. In a number of... More »

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