104 N. Central was built in 1875 by Eli Halberstadt, a prominent grain miller and Mayor of Urbana from 1867 to 1874. The architectural style of the house draws influences from Italianate, Queen Anne (Eastlake Subtype) and Stick styles. The plan of the house is an asymmetrical, picturesque, cross-wing plan which is typical of the Stick style. The house is topped with two intersecting steeply pitched cross-gable roofs with wide, overhanging eaves with exposed purlins below. The house is one and a half stories with a one story kitchen wing at the rear.
Red clapboard siding sheathes the house, which also has elegant white corner boards and a wide wood watertable. The majority of the windows are tall, thin, double-hung windows with plain sashes. There are also a number of square diamond-shaped windows with edge molded trim and eared corners on all the elevations and two large bay windows on the first floor. The detailed craftsmanship of the windows is typical of the Eastlake and Stick architectural styles as is the elaborately detailed Eastlake and Stick influenced entry porch. The porch is one story with a gable roof. A delicate frieze with turned spindle work is supported by intricate brackets which are held up by square classical columns of the Tuscan order. A decorative verge board can be found below the porch gable roof.
Eli Halberstadt, prominent miller and four-term mayor of Urbana, was born in Frederick County, Maryland on September 15, 1820, and was one of three children. His family soon moved to Darke County, Ohio where his father died in 1829. Returning to Maryland, his mother soon died, leaving the children orphans. Eli was apprenticed to a tailor in Maryland for three years and worked at this trade before moving to Urbana in 1855. On October 29, 1842, he married Rebecca Legore of Hanover, Pennsylvania. They had five children.
Upon arriving in Urbana in 1855, Eli Halberstadt became a partner in the grocery store firm of Bradshaw, Williams & Company, and soon bought out both partners. He sold his interest in the store in 1865. In 1864, Halberstadt, together with Edward Ater, began construction of a new grain warehouse with milling machinery and elevator along Boneyard Creek, north of Main Street, and in 1866/1867, Halberstadt opened the Union Mills flourmill. The Halberstadt house later owned by Fred C. Whittaker and his wife Clara. The Whittakers owned and operated an eponymous jewelry store in Urbana for many decades.