Andersonville’s roots as a community extend back into the 19th century, when immigrant Swedish farmers started moving north into what was then a distant suburb of Chicago. In the 1850s, the area north of Foster Avenue and east of Clark Street was a large cherry orchard, and families had only begun to move into the fringes of what is now Andersonville.
The historic Andersonville commercial district, along Clark Street and Ashland Avenue, is comprised mostly of early 20th century commercial architecture. Included in the historically significant buildings are a number of two- and three-story commercial brick buildings with limestone ornamentation. One of the best examples is the Temple Theater building, located at 5233 N. Clark St., now home to Women & Children First Books. A two-story brick building with limestone ornamentation with string courses and geometric patterns, this building is a typical example of an Andersonville commercial structure.