The Cornelius Coot statue first appeared in Statuesque Spendthrifts (1952) by Carl Barks. Here, Scrooge and the rich Maharajah of Howduyustan build enormous statues of Duckburg's founder thoughout the city. Barks re-used Coot's statue in Statues of Limitations (1957) and The Day Duckburg Got Dyed (1957). Afterwards, Coot's statues became a recurring location in many comics taking place in Duckburg.
Cornelius first appeared in person in a flashback in the Italian 1988 Disney comic Paperino e la "graande impresa", in which he looked similar to Donald. A year later, Don Rosa used Cornelius in His Majesty, McDuck, telling the story about how Cornelius became the owner of Fort Duckburg. In a flashback, we learn that, during Cornelius's stay in Fort Drake Borough, it was attacked by Spanish soldiers. When the British were incapable of defending the fort, the commander made a deal with Cornelius: the fort would pass to his property so the British wouldn't be responsible if the Spanish took it. Cornelius agreed, and then popped some corn to make it sound like shots, which made the Spanish troops run away.
Cornelius renamed the fort 'Fort Duckburg' and turned it into a trading camp for hunters. Several people began to settle down and form families, and Cornelius himself started a farm of his own. A village was formed in Duckburg, with Cornelius as the leader.
In 1991, the Dutch Disney comic Donald Duck in Prullaria showed the story of how Cornelius and his brother Johannes left the old country to start a new colony. Cornelius sailed to the West and Johannes sailed to the East. Two years later, Cornelius arrived in the New World and founded Duckburg there, while Johannes was never heard of again. The story later reveals that his ship was attacked by pirates and only few crew members escaped, excluding Johannes.
In modern times, Duckburg has a statue of Cornelius Coot holding corn. It can be seen in several comic stories, and also had a cameo in the DuckTales episode "Ducks on the Lam". A real-life version of the statue was also built in Mickey's Toontown Fair. The Toontown version included the legend:
- This Is Old Cornelius Coot
- Who Turned His Corn Crop Into Loot
- And Founded Mickey's Toontown Fair
- To Him We Dedicate This Square.