As the 19th century drew to a close, lifestyles changed and not every family needed a ten-room home with formal spaces. The simplified versions of the Colonial Revival (1900-1915) and Craftsman (1905-1925) architectural styles, which had evolved with the new century, provided a convenient reality for the average working class family. Also, coinciding with a large demand for housing, the several simplified versions of these styles provided the ideal architectural response to the subdivision of residential land from the previous large lots
Designed to sprawl horizontally upon its lot, this large single-story home was constructed in 1912 in a local modification of the Colonial Revival style best termed "period revival." The residence is dominated by various low hipped roofs and a central hipped dormer. The exaggerated eaves are distinguished by wooden rafters. The multi-paned, casement style windows, which are grouped into horizontal bands, are typical of Craftsman architecture, along with the multi-glass paned main entry door. Craftsman details also appear in wooden ornamentation, such as the projecting windows sills with scroll brackets and the wooden wall trellises.
Born in 1883, Oscar was the 3rd son and youngest child of Jacob and Mary Eberhard. Like his two older brothers, Oscar went to work at his father's tannery assuming the job of assistant secretary-treasurer. Following the death in 1942 of his oldest brother, John J., Oscar became the company president, a position he held until the tannery's sale in 1953. Originally owned by Philip Glein and called the Santa Clara Tannery, Jacob Eberhard had purchased it after his marriage to Glein's daughter, Mary in 1864. Under Jacob's ownership the tannery grew until by the time of its incorporation in 1892, as the Eberhard Tanning Company, it produced 29,000 cow, 3,000 calf and 100,000 sheep hides per year, becoming one the largest employers in Santa Clara. By 1915 the tannery occupied 11 acres and was one of the largest tanneries in the world.
This residence, on an unusually large lot, was renowned for its lovely gardens. Over the years Oscar Eberhard and his wife, Wilhelmina, hosted many social events at their home. When Oscar passed away in 1957, they had resided here for over 35 years.