Image of Lysander Spooner


Lifetime: 1808 - 1887 Passed: ≈ 137 years ago


Entrepreneur, Writer


United States

Lysander Spooner

Lysander Spooner was an American individualist anarchist. He was also an abolitionist, entrepreneur, essayist, legal theorist, pamphletist, political philosopher, Unitarian, writer and a member of the First International.  


Spooner was a strong advocate of the labor movement and anti-authoritarian and individualist anarchist in his political views. His economic and political ideology has usually been identified as libertarian socialism and mutualism. His writings contributed to the development of both left-libertarian and right-libertarian political theory within libertarianism in the United States.  


Spooner's writings include the abolitionist book The Unconstitutionality of Slavery and No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority, which opposed treason charges against secessionists. Spooner is also known for competing with the Post Office with his American Letter Mail Company. However, it was closed after legal problems with the federal government. 

Books by Lysander Spooner

Essay on the Trial by Jury Cover image

Essay on the Trial by Jury

Non-Fiction Essays
Judgement Short Works Laws

FOR more than six hundred years that is, since Magna Carta, in 1215 there has been no clearer principle of English or American constitutional law, than that, in criminal cases, it is not only the right and duty of juries to judge what are the facts,...

Vices Are Not Crimes  Cover image

Vices Are Not Crimes

Philosophy Non-Fiction
19th century Governments Poverty Politics political Ignorance

“Except those great crimes, which the few, calling themselves governments, practice upon the many, by means of organized, systematic extortion and tyranny. And it is only the poverty, ignorance, and consequent weakness of the many, that enable the co...