The original village of Short Pump, located at the intersection of Three Chopt Road, Richmond Turnpike and Pouncey Tract Road, was named for the short handled pump beneath the porch of a tavern located there. This area was on the principal route between Richmond and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Thomas Jefferson, the Earl Cornwallis, the Marquis de Lafayette, General Peter Muhlenberg, Stonewall Jackson and Ulric Dahlgren were some of the major people in American history that visited this area.
Short Pump has greatly increased in population and area in recent years, due to its proximity to Richmond. It has now become part of Richmond's Far West End. In 2003, developers opened Short Pump Town Center, a open air shopping mall.
Short Pump has many shopping centers and fast-food and upscale restaurants. There is also a skating rink, bowling alley and many neighborhoods under development.