The first edition of Walden (1854) included this map, drawn by Thoreau and based on the survey of Walden Pond that he talks about in “The Pond in Winter”:
In spite of working at his family’s pencil factory, Thoreau was invited to work for and live with his mentor and friend Ralph Waldo Emerson, which led to aspirations of writing.
Emerson gave permission for Thoreau to use a plot of land he owned at Walden Pond. In the two years Thoreau spent at the pond, he wrote one of his most famous works, Walden, which examines his time spent pursuing transcendentalist ideals.
“A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is Earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.” [9. The Ponds]