• Sun beginning to set at Harpers Ferry, as seen from Maryland Heights. Photo by NPS Volunteer Buddy Secor.

    Harpers Ferry

    National Historical Park WV,VA,MD

History & Culture

THE HISTORY OF HARPERS FERRY HAS FEW PARALLELS IN THE AMERICAN DRAMA. It is more than one event, one date, or one individual. It is multi-layered - involving a diverse number of people and events that influenced the course of our nation's history. Harpers Ferry witnessed the first successful application of interchangeable manufacture, the arrival of the first successful American railroad, John Brown's attack on slavery, the largest surrender of Federal troops during the Civil War, and the education of former slaves in one of the earliest integrated schools in the United States.

Information on the Park Library and Research Room

 
 
Drawing, "NEW RIFLE-MUSKET BALL. CALIBER .58." Nov. 24, 1855, Cat# HAFE13645
Armory engineer drawing collection. "NEW RIFLE-MUSKET BALL. CALIBER .58." November 24, 1855. Harpers Ferry NHP Museum Collection. Catalog # HAFE 13645.
(NPS Photo/Hammer)

Did You Know?

Intake arches channeled water to power industry on Virginius Island.

Virginius Island was a thriving 19th-century industrial town along the Shenandoah River. By 1859, there were about three dozen buildings there.