The Skillful Engineer

Patrick Chura

in Thoreau the Land Surveyor

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780813034935
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038278 | DOI:
The Skillful Engineer

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Thoreau made several surveys purely for the pleasure of experimentation. In addition to the surveys of Walden in 1846 and White Pond in 1851, Thoreau apparently made a recreational plan of the Old Marlborough Road sometime in the 1840s. During his paid surveying jobs in and around Concord, Thoreau often carried out “unnecessary” science, recording data that were of value only to himself as writer-naturalist. He often carried portable surveying instruments on his almost daily woodland excursions.

Keywords: scientific experiment; data recording; surveying instruments; pocket compass; recreational plan; land surveying

Chapter.  6752 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

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