February 25, 2017

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When servants chipped her dinnerware, this lady DID something about it. Learn how a 19th century socialite invented the dishwasher – and became a female business tycoon.

What they do:
Created the first mechanical dishwasher.

Josephine Cochrane was a wealthy socialite with a problem- when her servants washed the dishes, they were chipping the china that had been in her family since the 17th century. But, at the time, there was no better way to clean dishes. So she invented one: the dishwasher.

About the business:
Cochrane drew up some ideas on paper and took to the shed behind her house. She took careful measurements of her dishes and built compartments for them inside a wheel in a copper boiler. She added some water, soap, and a motor, and the first successful dishwasher was born. Cochrane soon founded the Garis-Cochran Dish-Washing Machine Company, and got some of her machines in the Chicago World’s Fair. The company eventually became Kitchen Aid, and the rest is history.

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