Park Library and Research Room

The Library of Harpers Ferry National Historical Park contains approximately 3,000 volumes that primarily pertain to the park's six themes: John Brown, Civil War, African-American History, Industry, Transportation, and Natural Heritage. The Research Room houses the park's collection of historic photographs, historic maps, architectural drawings, archeological reports, historic building reports, armory records, Storer College records, John Brown records, and much more. Many of the records in the Research Room are on microfilm, and microfilm readers are available.

The Park Library and Research Room are available to qualified researchers by appointment only. We can best serve you if you are able to provide an explanation of your research objectives. Please contact the museum management program.

People looking for in-depth information on Harpers Ferry or doing research on park-related themes may use the following bibliography. Many of these titles are available in the Park Library, at your local library, or at your local bookstore.

General Titles
  • Barry, Joseph. The Strange Story of Harpers Ferry. Harpers Ferry: The Women's Club of Harpers Ferry District, 1979. (Originally published in 1903).
  • Gilbert, David. A Walker's Guide to Harpers Ferry. Harpers Ferry: Harpers Ferry Historical Association, 1998.
  • Murfin, James V. From the Riot & Tumult: Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. Harpers Ferry: Harpers Ferry Historical Association, 1989.
  • Potter, Stephen R. Commoners, Tribute, and Chiefs: The Development of Algonquin Culture in the Potomac Valley. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1993.

John Brown
  • National Park Service. John Brown's Raid. Washington D.C.: National Park Service Publications, 1993.
  • Oates, Stephen. To Purge This Land With Blood. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1984.
  • Villard, Oswald Garrison. John Brown: A Biography. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1910.

Harpers Ferry & the Civil War
  • Frye, Dennis. "The Siege of Harpers Ferry." The Blue and Gray Magazine. Columbus: Blue & Gray Enterprises, Inc., August-September 1987.
  • Hearn, Chester. Six Years of Hell, Harpers Ferry During the Civil War. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1996.
  • Snell, Charles. Harpers Ferry Becomes a Fortress: September 21, 1862 - October 6, 1863. Harpers Ferry: National Park Service Publications, 1959.
  • Sullivan, Arthur. Harpers Ferry in the Civil War. Harpers Ferry: National Park Service Publications, 1961.

African-American History
  • Lewis, David Levering. W.E.B. DuBois: Biography of a Race. New York: Henry Holt & Co., 1993.
  • Mongin, Alfred. A College in Secessia: The Early Years of Storer College. Harpers Ferry: National Park Service Publications, 1960.
  • Quarles, Benjamin. Allies for Freedom: Blacks and John Brown. New York: Oxford University Press, 1974.
  • Toogood, Anna Coxe. The Lockwood House: Birthplace of Storer College. Washington D.C.: U.S. Office of Archeology and Historic Preservation, 1969.

  • Brown, Stuart. The Guns of Harpers Ferry. Berryville: Virginia Book Company, 1968.
  • Gilbert, David. Waterpower: Mills, Factories, Machines & Floods at Harpers Ferry. Harpers Ferry: Harpers Ferry Historical Association, 1999.
  • Smith, Merritt. Harpers Ferry Armory and the New Technology. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1977.

  • Dilts, James D. The Great Road: The Building of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad -- The Nation's First Railroad, 1828-1853. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1993.
  • Shaw, Ronald. Canals for a Nation: The Canal Era in the United States, 1790-1860. Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky, 1990.
  • Summers, Festus Paul. The Baltimore & Ohio in the Civil War. New York: G.P. Putnam & Sons, 1939.

Natural Heritage
  • Davis, Julia. Shenandoah: Daughter of the Stars. Baton Rouge: Louisiana University Press, 1994.
  • Neiring, William. Wetlands. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1988.
  • Sullivan, Ken. The Potomac: A Nation's River. Hong Kong: Everbest Publishing Co., 1994.
Bibliography developed with the assistance of Park intern Larry Dixon.

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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Mailing Address:

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
National Park Service
PO Box 65

Harpers Ferry, WV 25425


(304) 535-6029

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