Cochrane, Ont, incorporated as a town in 1910, population 5340 (2011c), 5487 (2006c). The Town of Cochrane is located 375 km northwest of North Bay. Named after the Honourable Francis Cochrane, then Ontario minister of Lands, Forests and Mines, the town was established 1908 at the point where the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway (now ONTARIO NORTHLAND) intersected with the NATIONAL TRANSCONTINENTAL RAILWAY. Destroyed 3 times by fire during its first 8 years, Cochrane grew slowly as a railway construction and repair centre, and in its early years also attracted a few farmers, lumbermen and merchants.
More recently, it has become an important tourist centre, serving as the departure point for the Polar Bear Express, Ontario Northland's train excursion to MOOSONEE on James Bay. Cochrane is the judicial seat for the Cochrane District and its single, largest year-round employers are a plywood and planing mill and a beverage plant.. Cochrane was the hometown of NHL hockey player and doughnut-franchise businessman, Tim Horton.