"What sir, would you make a ship sail against the wind and currents by lighting a bonfire under her deck? I pray you excuse me. I have no time to listen to such nonsense."-- Napoleon Bonaparte
There's no authoritative source for this quote. Since Fulton was commissioned to build a submarine and did build a steam-powered boat in France, it's unlikely for this quote to be actually true.
A great list of related quotes: Famous Authoritative Pronouncements.