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Frances Gabe
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Frances Gabe
Frances Gabe
Frances Gabe invented the "Self-Cleaning House".
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Women Inventors
Kitchen Appliances
~ Mary Bellis

The ultimate convenience invention must certainly be inventor Frances Gabe’s self-cleaning house. The house, a combination of some 68 time, labor and space saving mechanisms, makes the concept of housework obsolete.

Each of the rooms in the termite-proof, cinder block constructed, self-cleaning house is fitted with a 10-inch, ceiling-mounted cleaning/drying/heating/cooling device. The walls, ceilings and floors of the house are covered with resin, a liquid that becomes water-proof when hardened. The furniture is made of a water-proof composition, and there are no dust-collecting carpets anywhere in the house. At the push of a sequence of buttons, jets of soapy water wash the entire room. Then, after a rinse, the blower dries up any remaining water that hasn’t run down the sloping floors into a waiting drain.

The sink, shower, toilet and bathtub all clean themselves. The bookshelves dust themselves while a drain in the fireplace carries away ashes. The clothes closet is also a washer/drier combination. The kitchen cabinet is also a dishwasher; simply pile in soiled dishes, and don’t bother taking them out until they are needed again. Not only is the house of practical appeal to overworked homeowners, but also to physically handicapped people and the elderly.

Frances Gabe (or Frances G. Bateson) was born in 1915 and now resides comfortably in Newberg, Oregon in the prototype of her self-cleaning house. Gabe gained experience in housing design and construction at an early age from working with her architect father. She entered the Girl’s Polytechnic College in Portland, Oregon at age 14 finishing a four-year program in just two years. After World War II, Gabe with her electrical engineer husband started a building repairs business that she ran for more than 45 years.

In addition to her building/inventing credits, Frances Gabe is also an accomplished artist, musician, and mother.

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