The Ashokan Reservoir is a freshwater reservoir on the eastern edge of Catskill Park that provides fresh water to the City of New York. It is one of several in the region created specifically for the city and is the city’s deepest at 190 feet near the dam at the former site of Bishop Falls.
The reservoir was constructed between 1907 and 1915 by the New York City Board of Water Supply by impounding Esopus Creek. Thousands of acres of farmland and twelve communities were submerged, and 2,000 residents had to be relocated for the project. Some of the communities were relocated to higher ground, such as Ashokan, Shokan, West Shokan, and Olivebridge, although many others were remembered only through historical markers.