June 21, 2021

The strange town of Parksville, New York:

There’s nothing wrong with Parksville, New York, but no one wants to live there for some reason. The first documented settlers of Parksville, Martin and Eber Hall, arrived in the 1800s, with William Park jumpstarting the hamlet’s community and industry. It was a prosperous community, bringing charm to the Catskills. The Ontario and Western (O&W) Railway that ran through the town made it easy for people to travel to Parksville for a peaceful summer getaway in the country.The Great Depression drastically changed this vacation dynamic.

A large number of Parksville’s 100 hotels and resorts had to close down. Still, a few of the town’s major hotels remained open, including Young’s Gap. Despite the town’s seeming resilience, the decline of the popularity of the O&W meant less foot traffic. The last trains ran through Parksville in the 1950s. Hope shined on Parksville in the late-1980s and 90s, when Route 17 brought traffic through the town. But again, another travel hiccup got in the way of Parksville’s true return. New York converted Route 17 to Interstate 86, which redirected traffic out of the town. This change rendered Parksville, once again, without its main source of people. Local business owners have tried a few times to bring the once-bustling town back to its former glory, yet it remains abandoned.