Robert Fulton , American engineer, was recognized as the inventor of the commercial steamboat in 1806 (the River Steamboat ). He patented the invention and obtained the exclusive on the New York boat supply.
He also designed the first steam-powered warship called Demologos , although it was later called Fulton the First .
Fulton the First
Although not all were great successes for good old Fulton, he also has a great failure to his credit in terms of warships, rather submarines. His idea of a war submarine (Nautilus ) was a «gadget » that on the surface moved with a sail and under the sea was propelled by a manual propeller. During the summer of 1801 he made a demonstration in the port of Brest (France); the Nautilus was able to place an explosive under the hull of a corvette and destroy it. Napoleon He thought that he had in his hands the solution to defeat the powerful English army. After several attempts to destroy an English ship... nothing was achieved and Napoleon rejected the idea.
Neither short nor lazy, he offered his invention to the English who, after paying 800 pounds, took over his services. He tested a second version of the Nautilus but after the English victory over the Franco-Spanish navy at Trafalgar (1805) the idea was abandoned. The English ruled the seas, they no longer needed this «gadget «.
Source and images:Robert Fulton's Steamboat, wikipedia