Fines and Payment Copy

The Library distributes overdue notices by email and text message.  Failure to receive an overdue notice does not exempt a library card holder from responsibility for overdue fines. If fines exceed $25.00, borrowing privileges will be suspended until fines are reduced below the $25.00 limit.

Loan Periods and Automatic Renewals

Eligible items like books, CDs, and DVDs will automatically renew up to three times. The new date is calculated from the previous due date, not from the date of renewal. Borrowers who have an email address will continue to receive a courtesy notice three days before the item due date. The notice will list items that have been automatically renewed and the new due date. The notice will alert the patron to items that are ineligible for renewal and the original due date. It is important to note that items that cannot be renewed will still accrue fines if they are late. Please note: this service does not apply to digital materials (i.e. Overdrive/Libby), Express and Rental items, Museum passes, Library of Things, and Other “non-traditional” items.


When all available copies of a title are checked out, a hold can be placed on that particular item. Holds can be placed online, in person, or by phone with a valid library card.  You will be contacted by email, text message, or phone when your hold is available. Holds are kept for seven days and then released if not picked up.


The Nantucket Atheneum (or the “library”) respects your privacy and has instituted this Privacy Policy intended to ensure that your personal information is handled in a safe and responsible manner.  As the island’s public library resource, the Nantucket Atheneum adheres to the principles in effect for public libraries in Massachusetts, aiming to protect the “identity and intellectual pursuits” of library patrons.

Personal Information

Personal information is any information that could reasonably be used to identify an individual, including, but not limited to, a person’s name, address, e-mail address, social security number, birth date, financial account information or credit card number.  Individuals may visit the Nantucket Atheneum’s website without identifying themselves or revealing any personal information.

As a general rule, the Nantucket Atheneum does not sell, swap, rent, trade, or otherwise disclose personal information to any third party for commercial purposes.  Personal information will be used only for the purpose for which it has been requested.  If you have supplied us with your e-mail address, postal address or telephone number online, you may receive periodic e-mails, mailings and telephone calls about promotions and upcoming events.  If you do not want to receive such information from us in the future, please contact us.

The library may disclose personal information when accessing or assisting patrons to access the Cape Libraries Automated Materials Sharing (CLAMS) system.  The library may use information technology and/or other third party service providers for website maintenance or to assist with other operations, who may have access to personal information when performing such services.  The library has a written information security program in place to limit the exposure to and use of any personal information by third party service providers.

The library keeps the minimum number of records necessary for maintaining operations.  When a patron logs off a library computer, information about that user session is automatically deleted.  When you return materials to the library, information about what was checked out is automatically deleted at the end of the day, unless a patron has fines due.

The Nantucket Atheneum reserves the right to disclose personal information (including circulation records) as required by law or court order, in order to comply with the USA Patriot Act, as amended by the USA Freedom Act of 2015.  If disclosures of personal information and circulation records are made under these circumstances, the library is prohibited by law from informing you of such disclosures.

Donor Privacy

We will not sell, share or trade our donors’ names or personal information with any other entity, nor send mailings to our donors on behalf of other organizations.

This policy applies to all information received by the Nantucket Atheneum, both online and offline, on any Platform (“Platform”, includes the Nantucket Atheneum website and mobile applications), as well as any electronic, written, or oral communications.

Children’s Privacy

Children age 12 and older are permitted to obtain their own library card and use library services and resources in accordance with library polices.  Parents and guardians are encouraged to educate children of all ages with respect to privacy concerns, including advising children not to provide any personal information when using online (or offline) resources.

Credit Card Information

This website uses SSLA Secured processing to encrypt credit card information provided as part of any online donation or purchase.  This process eliminates the risk of the decoding of that information by anyone other than the Nantucket Atheneum for the purposes of processing your order.  To check the security of your connection, look at the bottom of your browser window after accessing the server.  If you see an unbroken key or a closed lock (depending upon your browser), then the secured processing is active.  You can also verify secured processing by looking at the URL line of your browser.  When accessing a secure server, the first characters of the site address will change from “http” to “https.”


“Cookies” may be used in connection with this site. A cookie is a small amount of identifier data that is sent to your browser from a web server and stored on your computer’s hard drive. By using cookies, information is potentially collected without your express knowledge. Most browsers are initially set to accept cookies but permit you to change the setting to refuse cookies or to be alerted when cookies are being sent. While refusal to accept cookies will not prevent the use of some portions of this site, other portions of this site may not function properly without cookies.

Log Files

The library may collect other information about its users that is not connected with any specific personal identity, such as data about usage and service operation.  Our web server may record the numerical Internet Protocol (IP) address of the computer being used to access the Nantucket Atheneum’s website, geographic location of visitors, information about a user’s browser and operating system, internet service provider, date and time of access, and the internet address and page which linked a user to our site.  This information is anonymous, and, unless required by law, the library does not link such information to individual users.  The Nantucket Atheneum may use such information to help diagnose problems with our server, to administer and improve our website, and to generate aggregate statistical reports that analyze general user information and demographics.


This site contains links to other independently run websites, social media platforms, services and “downloadables” that are not controlled by the Nantucket Atheneum and are not covered by this Privacy Policy.  The Nantucket Atheneum privacy practices may differ from these other sites or platforms.  The Nantucket Atheneum is not responsible for the privacy policy, practices, security or content of any website linked to from this site.  This Privacy Policy applies solely to information collected by the library’s website.

Security Precautions

This site has security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse and alteration of the information under the Nantucket Atheneum’s control.  Nevertheless, due to the nature of internet communications, no data transmission over the internet can be guaranteed to be completely secure.  While the library remains committed to protecting the privacy of our users, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information transmitted to us, and users assume the risk of interacting with the library’s website.

Patron Expectations

The library expects patrons to be civil and respectful and to refrain from posting discriminatory or obscene materials when using any on-line services accessed through the library website, or when posting on the library’s social media platforms.  In the case of chat, text or e-mail services, if you use abusive or inappropriate language, the library may terminate the session and/or take other appropriate action. The Nantucket Atheneum respects the privacy of your identity; however, persons making threats or using harassing language may be reported to the appropriate authorities.


This Privacy Policy may be updated as circumstances warrant, and we encourage you to check it from time to time.  If you have questions about this Privacy Policy or its implementation please contact us at

Library Materials Reconsideration

The Nantucket Atheneum is committed to the principles stated in the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights and Freedom to Read statements (see below). The Nantucket Atheneum will acknowledge comments and questions regarding the appropriateness of selection or non-selection of individual works. In such cases, the patron is invited to document specific objections on a special reconsideration form that can be obtained at the Circulation Desk.  The form will be reviewed by the Director, and a response will be communicated in a timely manner.

American Library Association Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.

  • Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
  • Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
  • Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
  • Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  • A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
  • Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.

Adopted June 18, 1948. Amended February 2, 1961, and January 23, 1980, inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 23, 1996, by the ALA Council.

Internet Acceptable Use

Rules of Conduct

  • Users will not intentionally access, transmit, copy or create material that is illegal (such as obscenity, stolen materials or illegal copies of copyrighted works).
  • Users respect and protect the privacy of others, and will refrain from attempting to view or read material being used by others.
  • Users will only use their assigned accounts.
  • Users will not view, use or copy passwords, data or networks to which they are not authorized.
  • Users will not distribute private information about others or themselves.
  • Users will not destroy or damage data, networks or other resources that do not belong to them, without clear permission of the owner.
  • Users will not install, download or modify software on Nantucket Atheneum machines.
  • Users will not make any attempt to gain unauthorized access to restricted files or networks, or do damage or modify computer equipment or software.
  • Prompt payment is required by users who incur charges for printing, copying, office supplies or any authorized fees.
  • Users must sign in to use the next available terminal. Terminals will not be reserved for persons who are not in the immediate vicinity when their name is called, and telephone reservations will not be taken.
  • Access sessions will be limited to 30 minutes, unless otherwise authorized by the librarian in charge.
  • Users must end their session and leave the terminal when asked to do so by authorized Atheneum staff.
  • Users are required to wait 60 minutes before requesting to sign up for another session.
  • The librarian in charge will determine how many sessions per day users can have; such limitations will be dependent on facility capacity and the librarian in charge’s determination.
  • Users will report threatening or discomforting materials or behavior to the staff member in charge.

Child Supervision

The Nantucket Atheneum offers a welcoming, educational, and safe place for you and your child.  The staff of the Weezie Library for Children would like to help you and your child in your search for recreational, informative and enriching literature and media.  While we are ready and willing to serve your needs, we are not authorized to act in loco parentis (in the place of a parent).

Parents, guardians, and caregivers are responsible for the safety, behavior, and supervision of their children at all times in the Atheneum and on Atheneum property.

Children, like all library users, are required to respect library property and to act in a manner appropriate to the use and function of the library. We hope that the following guidelines will help clarify our concerns and expectations.

  • Children under the age of six must always be in close proximity and within sight of the adult responsible for their safety.
  • Children ages six to nine must be supervised while in the library. While browsing or reading in another area of the library is acceptable, parents or caregivers are asked to remain in the library building.
  • Children over age three are invited to participate in children’s programs without the direct supervision of their parent or caregiver if they feel comfortable with that independence.  Caregivers are asked to remain in the library building during the program.
  • Children ten and older may be at the library unattended, provided they are mature enough to follow library rules and observe proper conduct. Such children are subject to the same rules of behavior as other patrons and the same consequences, including being asked to leave the library.
  • Children of any age with mental, physical, or emotional disabilities which affect decision-making skills or render supervision necessary must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver at all times.
  • Children under the age of sixteen left unattended at closing time may be deemed at risk.  If a parent or caregiver of a child cannot be contacted or located within twenty minutes of the library’s closing time, the Town of Nantucket Police Department will be contacted to take custody of the child and continue efforts to contact the parents.  Staff will not transport children home or to any other destination under any circumstances.
  • The Nantucket Atheneum welcomes visits from groups, such as schools, daycare centers, and home-schooling groups.  Groups of children must be accompanied by an adult. Groups of eight or more children must be accompanied by at least two adults.  Teachers or group leaders are responsible for group discipline and must remain with the group the entire visit.  The behavior of the group should not disturb other library patrons.

If you have any questions regarding our Child Supervision Policy, please contact the Children’s Librarian or the Library Director.  Thank you for following these guidelines to keep children safe and keep our staff efficient and productive.

Public Use of Library Spaces

The public spaces of the Nantucket Atheneum are primarily for library use and for occasional use by community organizations. Please review our guidelines for use of the Nantucket Atheneum public spaces.