Become a Guide

Thank you for your interest in the Harpers Ferry Park Guide program. Harpers Ferry Park Association (HFPA) administers this program as a part of its partnership with Harpers Ferry National Historical Park (HFNHP). The purpose of the Harpers Ferry Park Guide program is to enhance and supplement existing tours of the park by offering longer and more extensive tours of the Lower Town, Bolivar Heights and Camp Hill.

  • The association certifies park guides and schedules all tours for guides.
  • The guide pays a $50 annual administrative fee beginning the second year of participation.
  • HFPA receives and schedules tour requests and collects all tour fees.
  • HFPA pays the guides 80% of tour fees collected on a monthly basis. The remaining 20% of tour fees covers HFPA administrative costs. All additional revenue goes directly to the educational and interpretive programs of HFNHP. Fees range from $80 per car to $225 per bus for a 2 1⁄2 hour tour.
  • Guides meet visitors at the Park Visitor Center and ride in the visitor’s vehicles to specified areas for their interpretive experience. Guides will step on tour buses to lead a tour.
  • Guides are required to wear a prescribed uniform, which the guides will provide following the specifications in the Park Guide Manual.
  • Guides must possess a valid state driver’s license and auto insurance. Guides are self-employed, independent contractors and are responsible for having personal liability insurance and must provide proof of insurance.

 There is a four-step certification process guide candidates must complete:

1. A comprehensive written examination with approximately 200 questions (comprised of true/false, multiple choice, and short answers). Passing score is 80%. There is a $50 test fee. Tests can be retaken once at no cost.
2. A one-day administrative and interpretive skills training session.
3. A minimum of 40 volunteer hours at HFNHP to (1) demonstrate that you are able to interact with the public, and have the proper demeanor to be a guide, and (2) gain a working knowledge of services and facilities in the park, based on questions asked at the information desks.
4. A test tour with a certified guide, park ranger, and HFPA executive director to evaluate historical knowledge and interpersonal and communicative skills.

Since the written test will be very comprehensive, we are providing a list of resources you will find useful for your preparation. The test covers all park themes including geography and natural history, early Harpers Ferry history, Lewis & Clark, U.S. Armory and industrial history, water-power history, John Brown and the history of the Raid, Civil War, Storer College and the Niagara Movement, railroad and canal history, and local history. Also addressed are park resources, buildings, exhibits and landscapes.

To become a Park Guide, please submit your application here.