The very best instructions on building a traditional bow--called a self bow--is in a series of books entitled The Traditional Bowyer's Bible. These books--I found them at the local library--tell you how to do everything associated with the ancient art of bow building. Even to making the string, if you really want to get traditional.
There are--believe it or not--many different types of wood you can use, but in your area hickory or black locust may be the best bet. I don't have either of these types of wood near my home, but my neighbor has made several 60+lb bows from certain types of oak. These books are really detailed and tell how to make a simple dryer to speed up the drying process in a very short time. Here they are on Amazon.