• 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

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  • Change in Park Hours

    The park is currently open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with the last shuttle bus departing Lower Town at 6:45 p.m. More »

  • Murphy Farm Closure Sept 2-4, 2014

    The Murphy Farm will be closed to public access Sept. 2-4, 2014 to allow application of fertilizer to the hayfields. For further information please click on the "More" link or contact the park’s Resource Management Specialist at 304-535-6038. More »

Flood Plains

rose mallow

Halberd-leaved rose mallow (Hibiscus militaris) growing along the banks of the Shenandoah River.

NPS photo

Floodplains are primarily located along the shores of the Potomac and ShenandoahRivers, sometimes reaching inland along stream banks that drain into these rivers. Many forests on the lower floodplain are dominated by silver maple (Acer saccharinum), sycamore (Platanus occidentalis), and green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica). Upper floodplains are commonly covered with tulip poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera), sugar maple (Acer saccharum), hackberry (Celtis occidentalis), and white ash (Fraxinus americana). During a recent vegetation inventory, Shumard oak (Quercus shumardii) was recorded for the first time in the park along the banks of the Potomac. This tree is one of the largest oaks, preferring moist, well-drained, bottomland soils on stream and river banks.

Other herbaceous vegetation found along the water's edge include mistflower eupatorium (Eupatorium coelestinum), water-willow (Justicia
americana), and halberd-leaved rose mallow (Hibiscus militaris). When walking higher on the floodplain, pawpaw (Asimina triloba), spicebush (Lindera benzoin), American bladdernut (Staphylea trifolia), and wingstem (Verbsina alternifolia) are some of the species likely to be encountered.

Did You Know?

Photo of the National League of Colored Women at the John Brown Fort.

On July 14, 1896, during their first National Convention, the National League of Colored Women visited the John Brown Fort. They were the first group known to make such a pilgrimage to this site.