Shandaken is known as the “Heart of the Catskill Mountains.” In the town’s early years, leather tanning, barrel hoop shaving, and quarrying were mainstays of employment and were relied on by local residents. With time, each of these industries became obsolete due to modern advances and developments. Shandaken was revitalized with the arrival of the railroad, which enabled New York City residents to escape the summer heat and travel to the many hotels that sprang up in town. Tourism increased with the formation of the Forrest Preserve, the Catskill Park, and the New York City watershed. Later winter tourism boomed with the popularity of skiing. Although Shandaken has endured many changes, it has retained its charm and historic character.