The Savvy Woman Who Invented the Dishwasher

On an ordinary day in the 1880's, a Shelbyville, Ohio woman took some dirty dishes and made history.  Josephine Garis Cochran was the first person to build a working dish-washing machine, succeeding where others had failed.

Born in 1839, Josephine married a successful merchant in 1858.  They entertained frequently, and Josephine grew frustrated that her fine china was chipping.  Believing that the cause was harsh handling by those who washed it, she began washing the dishes herself but soon thought there must be a better way to avoid the drudgery of manual washing.