In 1807, he developed the first commercially successful steamboat. The name of Fulton's first steamboat is often given as the Clermont. In fact, he never called it by that name, generally referring to it simply as the North River Steamboat, but the name often appears in the literature. The Clermont left New York City for Albany, New York on the Hudson River on August 17, 1807, inaugurating the first commercial steamboat service in the world.
Robert Fulton is buried in Old Trinity Churchyard, New York City.