Sherm Cochran founded Cochran’s Inc., a wholesale granite brokerage company, in 1976. Initially, the company slogan was “Your Man in Barre”. It was modified slightly in 1981 to “Your Team in Barre” when Diane Cochran, Sherm’s wife, started working for the company. For several years the company was housed on the couple’s back porch! As the company grew, more space was needed than the back porch could provide.
In 1984, Cochran’s Inc. purchased several sections of the former Cook, Watkins and Patch granite plant for their new location. Two employees were hired after the relocation. The next year, Cochran’s bought their first computer, hired a programmer and began developing a CAD program to perform monumental drafting and stencil cutting. Cochran’s Quick-Cut System was developed solely for the monument industry. In 1987, (when DOS was the main operating system and computers were new!) we began marketing computerized CAD systems for cutting sandblast stencil. We offer training for those purchasing Cochran’s Quick-Cut Systems because we believe that well-trained customers would use the systems constantly. This became our best advertisement, as one satisfied customer told another and another and another. More qualified employees were needed to train customers to use Cochran’s Quick-Cut Systems and to provide technical support and assistance. Computer-drawn designs are created daily and published regularly in Design Books. This Design Series (QDD designs) is a well-known design reference for sandblast designs in the Monument Industry. They can be purchased as a set with our new, updated software: Cochran’s Monumental Designer CAD 2015. This modern software even has full 3-D COLOR-RENDERING capabilities.
Cochran’s Inc. opened a fully-automated sandblast in 1989, utilizing the Cochran’s Quick-Cut System to cut the stencil for their sandblast. Our streamlined sandblast has conveyors throughout for efficient movement of stones. We even have (and sell) COMPUTERIZED SANDBLAST CURTAINS! We easily shape-carve over 100 monument a week with only a few trained Barre Craftsmen.
In 1995, Cochran’s introduced laser etchings. This was the first time a laser had been used in the monument industry to produce etchings. The result was phenomenal!!! Laser-etchings are as detailed and exquisite as hand-etchings, but can be produced faster and more efficiently. Portraits and lettering are easy to produce with the Cochran’s Laser-Etching System. We have utilized this system daily since 1995, as well as marketing our system throughout the industry. All of these efficient systems can be seen in operation at our 15 Blackwell Street location. Shelley Cochran, other family members, and many other highly qualified, long-term employees are ready to assist and answer questions about granite or any of the systems we sell to produce monuments. Cochran’s business philosophy is “enhancement and advancement of the monument industry through computer technology, Barre craftsmanship and teamwork”.