Today I learned why the dishwasher was invented



  • Not to make doing the dishes easier.

    Its main purpose was to reduce the number of breakages caused by servants, rather than to act as a labour-saving device.
    The first practical mechanical dishwasher was invented in 1886 by Josephine Garis Cochran (1839–1913) of Shelbyville, Illinois. She was the daughter of a civil engineer and, on her mother’s side, the great-granddaughter of John ‘Crazy’ Fitch, the inventor of the steamboat. A prominent socialite, married to a merchant and politician, her main problem in life was worrying about the maids chipping her precious china (it had been in the family since the seventeenth century).

    This enraged her and, so the story goes, one night she dismissed the servants, did the dishes on her own, saw what an impossible job it was and vowed, if no one else would, to invent a machine to do it instead. When her husband William died in 1883, leaving her in debt, she got serious.

    With the help of an engineer friend, she designed the machine in her woodshed. It was crude and cumbersome but effective. There was a small foot-pedal driven version and a large steam-driven one. The latter, able to wash and dry 200 dishes in two minutes, was the sensation of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, and won first prize for the ‘best mechanical construction for durability and adaptation to its line of work’. At $250 each, however, the machines were too expensive for home use, but enough were sold to hotels and restaurants to keep Cochran’s Crescent Washing Machine Company in business until her death in 1913.



  • The usefulness of dishwashers is fake news. I've never used them. Scraping the plates, loading them in, unloading them, what is the point? Just wash the dishes in the sink.



  • Cool story.



  • @Horace said in Today I learned why the dishwasher was invented:

    The usefulness of dishwashers is fake news. I've never used them. Scraping the plates, loading them in, unloading them, what is the point? Just wash the dishes in the sink.

    Ah, the innocent joy of not being FREAKING INUNDATED WITH A CONSTANT FREAKING NEVER-ENDING STREAM OF FREAKING DIRTY DISHES, EVERY DAMN MOMENT OF THE DAY. JESUS H. CHRIST, DO YOU NEVER CLEAR UP????

    Sorry, I need to have a lie down.



  • Not only is it a time saver our house, the machine water temp is far higher than what my hands can tolerate.
    Part of the time savings is due to hubby's willingness to help because it's a machine. Tools and machines make it more manly for him. Is it any wonder we have two?



  • Sterilization, thus decimating our immune systems. If we all did them by hand COVID-19 would be scared of us.



  • Know how to turn a dishwasher into a snow plow?

    Give her a shovel.......



  • @Mik said in Today I learned why the dishwasher was invented:

    Sterilization, thus decimating our immune systems. If we all did them by hand COVID-19 would be scared of us.

    That would explain why life expectancy in medieval times was about 150 years 🙂



  • 😆



  • @Doctor-Phibes said in Today I learned why the dishwasher was invented:

    @Mik said in Today I learned why the dishwasher was invented:

    Sterilization, thus decimating our immune systems. If we all did them by hand COVID-19 would be scared of us.

    That would explain why life expectancy in medieval times was about 150 years 🙂

    Perfect. Thank you, Phibes.



  • Interesting story. If someone were to ask me when the dishwasher was invented, I would have guessed around 1935-1960, at least a long time after the refrigerator. And certainly not before the TV became established.



  • Yeah, I would have guessed 1939 worlds fair. Lots of home appliances made a debut there.

    My dad was at that fair as a young boy.



  • Some dishwashers work better than others.

    With one dishwasher I used to have at a house that I used to live in, you had to partially clean the dishes before turning on the dishwasher. This dishwasher didn't do such a good job.

    However, other dishwashers that I've used work much better.



  • @Larry said in Today I learned why the dishwasher was invented:

    Know how to turn a dishwasher into a snow plow?

    Give her a shovel.......

    Somehow... I KNEW it would be you. 😂



  • I'm glad that I live in a time where dishwashers have been around for a long time.

    I don't like to clean dishes and glasses by hand.



  • The nice thing about a dishwasher is that after the dishes are done you can polish your knob with it..


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