Must-Read: Bradley A. Hansen: Ironic Origins of Libertarianism:
"Some liberty-loving soul had donated a copy of John Hospers’s Libertarianism: A Political Philosophy for Tomorrow (1971) to my local public library...
"...While I doubt I would find Hospers’s book impressive today, at the time it was a thrilling read. I had never heard the 'standard libertarian arguments' before." (Bryan Caplan)
"When I was about thirteen, I decided I wanted to read all of the good books in the public library…. At the public library I found Ayn Rand; my grandmother also recommended her to me. Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal had a big influence on me, as did Atlas Shrugged. Hayek and Rothbard followed shortly thereafter." (Tyler Cowen)
"I had some unusual early influences. In the eighth grade I borrowed an H.L. Mencken book from the city library. I couldn’t understand why everybody didn’t think and write like he did. Also, I became enamored of the Barry Goldwater legend." (Karen De Coster)
"That experience led me to the public library and a host of books on economics, one of which was a book whose table of contents I could not understand and which had never before even been checked out: Mises’s Human Action." (Robert Formaini)