Where to Go, What to Do in Harpers Ferry, W.Va.

150 years ago in Harpers Ferry, John Brown led a raid on the town to capture weapons in an attempt to lead a slave uprising. His attempts were thwarted by U.S. troops and Brown was tried for treason and hanged.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009



Harpers Ferry, W.Va., is about 50 miles from the Capital Beltway. Take Interstate 270 north to I-70 west toward Hagerstown, Md., then take Exit 52 to Charles Town and Leesburg. Continue on U.S. 15/U.S. 340 west across the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers and take a left onto Shenandoah Street to the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park Visitor Center. Parking in the visitor center lot is $6. A free National Park Service shuttle takes you to the Lower Town (which will be closed to vehicular traffic Friday-Sunday).


Hotels in Harpers Ferry are booked for this weekend, but if you want to go for the entire commemoration, other alternatives include:

Turf Motel, 741 E. Washington St., Charles Town, W.Va.; 800-422-TURF, http://www.turfmotel.com. Weekend rooms start at $105.

Courtyard Frederick, 5225 Westview Dr., Frederick, 301-631-9030, http://www.marriott.com. Rooms start at $119 a night.


Secret Six Tavern, 186 High St., 304-535-3044. Named after Brown's financial backers. Outdoor pub grub with a great view of the Potomac. Entrees $10 to $20.


All events on the commemorative weekend are free. Rangers will hand out programs, including a schedule of events and a map, in the Lower Town.

Ghost Tours of Harpers Ferry, 175 High St., 304-725-8019, http://www.harpersferryghost.20m.com. Tours available Monday through Saturday by reservation. Start time is 8 p.m. (Also 6 p.m. tours on weekends in October.) Tours last about an hour. $8, $5 ages 8 to 10, free for children younger than 8.


304-535-6029, http://www.nps.gov/hafe

-- S.E.

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