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Cordova is located on the northeast side of Memphis, north of Germantown, and northwest of Collierville. It is minutes from Germantown, Collierville, and downtown Memphis.
The majority of Cordova has been annexed by the City of Memphis. The remainder of Cordova is in unincorporated Shelby County, in the Memphis Annexation Reserve area. Parts of Shelby Farms Park are considered to be in Cordova. The Old Cordova Area consists of the former town of Cordova, with some of the original structures still present. Cordova was renowned for the freshly cut flowers that were shipped to Memphis, Tennessee thus the town's motto was "Farms, Flowers and Fellowship.”
Cordova grew from a quiet country farm hamlet with a population of 150 people in 1912 to one of the fastest growing neighborhoods of Memphis. Retail growth exploded in the late 1990s thanks to the Wolfchase Galleria shopping mall, which at the time was the largest retail center in Shelby County outside of Memphis city limits. Cordova continues to preserve its past with a historic downtown which each year celebrates with an annual crafts fair and having its own Fourth of July parade.
Cordova has changed its name several times. Originally, it was known as Allentown next Marysville then Dexter. In 1888 the Dexter post office was opened. Then in 1900 the name was changed to Cordova. It is believed the town changed its name to "Cordova" to not be confused with another town named Dexter that was located on the same NC&St.L railroad line that ran through town.
Cordova was one of the many small railroad stops along the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis Railway route to Memphis, Tennessee. The original station which was built in 1889 is still standing. An important ammunition plant was near Cordova and was served by the railroad during World War II.
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