Harpers Ferry also holds a history of African Americans in West Virginia. After the American Civil War a school to educate newly freed African Americans was formed by missionaries. The school later turned into Storer College. In 1906, on the campus of Storer College, the second meeting of the Niagara Movement took place, and was led by W.E.B DuBois. The Niagara Movement was the forerunner of the NAACP. Storer College ended in 1954, when the Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education was passed making segregated schools illegal. Today, Storer College is a training center for the National Park Service.
Transportation and Industry are also prominent themes in Harpers Ferry. The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad meets the Winchester & Potomac Railroad in Harpers Ferry, along with the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal. The canal was a way to transport goods from Cumberland, Maryland to Washington DC. With it’s ideal location for water powered factories, Harpers Ferry was home to cotton mills, paper mills, rifle works, and the Federal Armory and Arsenal. However, when you visit the park today all that remains are the ruins of the once industrial town due to the flooding that occurred.