Laws & Policies

This page provides information regarding laws and policies at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. This information is not intended to be a comprehensive list, but rather a place to begin understanding the rules and regulations. If you have questions or need clarification about the information provided here, please email us.


Basic Rules and Regulations

This one page document explains the basic rules and regulations of Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. For anyone planning a trip to Harpers Ferry, this document explains the rules regarding pets, picnicking, recreational activities, and much more. (Basic Rules and Regulations Document, PDF)


Code of Federal Regulations

This three page document is the portion of 36 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) that pertains to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. It is divided into three parts: Visiting Hours, Public Use Limits, Closures, Designations; Activities that Require a Permit; and General Regulations. This document goes into more detail than the basic rules and regulations document. (Harpers Ferry specific, Code of Federal Regulations, PDF)



As of February 22, 2010, a new federal law allows people who can legally possess firearms under applicable federal, state, and local laws, to legally possess firearms in this park.

It is the responsibility of visitors to understand and comply with all applicable state, local, and federal firearms laws before entering this park. As a starting point, please visit our state’s website.

Maryland State Law
See Maryland Code, Public Safety, Title 5
See also Maryland Code, Criminal Law, Title 4
Maryland Attorney General

West Virginia
West Virginia State Law
See sections 61-7-1 to 61-7-15 and 20-2-6a
West Virginia Attorney General

Virginia Law
See sections 18.2-279 through 18.2-312
Virginia Attorney General

Federal law also prohibits firearms in certain facilities in this park; those places are marked with signs at all public entrances.


Launching, Landing, or Operation of Unmanned Aircraft within Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

This one page document is an addition to the Superintendent's Compendium regarding rules and regulations at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. This document states "36 CFR 1.5 (a)(1) - General Closure - Launching, landing or operating an unmanned aircraft from or on lands and waters administered by the National Park Service within the boundaries of Harpers Ferry National Historical Park is prohibited except as approved in writing by the Superintendent." Please read the entire document for more information. (Launching, Landing, or Operation of Unmanned Aircraft, PDF)


Superintendent's Compendium

This 25-page document is the Superintendent's Compendium of Designations, Closures, Permit Requirements and Other Restrictions Imposed Under Discretionary Authority. The document goes into detail regarding the Code of Federal Regulations which pertain to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. (Superintendent's Compendium, PDF)

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