Charles Meryon led the etching revival in France. He stood apart from his contemporaries through his unique subject matter and his meticulous subtlety of execution. Le Pont Neuf is one of 25 etchings of Paris he made between 1850 and 1854. During this time Paris under went much modernisation, altering its medieval character.
Impressions from the Etchings of Paris were exhibited at the 'Exposition Universelle', a world fair held in Paris in 1855. It is possible that Whistler and Haden visited the exhibition together. Meryon’s views of the riverbank and streets along the River Seine were instantly popular with print collectors. Haden owned prints by Meryon which Whistler would have studied with great interest.