Newark December 21st 1864.
My Dear Friends
I shall again write to you for I have rec’d a letter through Steward Grover from you the first letter I have had for weeks. You probally think I have no interest with you so it is not nesesary for you to write. Well I have none if you are strangers. I will write now but not again until I receive an answer. I have been very sick for the last two days, it is an affection of the kidneys I never spent two such painfull nights as the 19th & 20th of this month I did not sleep a wink alth I took 6 grains of morphine each night. I do not know the cause of it unless it was from a severe cold I took last week. I am now while writing in much pain but not to be compaired with the state I was in yesterday & day before. I should be very glad if you would send me the Kalamazoo Telegraph. Although I am sick I still manage to work considerable that is write. They are going to send off a squad of men again today to the front. I should not much wonder if I should make aplication to go for our Dr is going to the front as a full Surgeon and I don’t much care about staying when he is gone if I am able to get to the Dismounted Camp a Washington, altho I am very comfortable here & have a fine Office all to my self that is papered nicely a great beautifull Desk which is covered with fine black oil cloth & varnished & vaneared all around the wood work 3 large drawers a carpet a book Rack a stand & wash bowl – pitcher 3 large arm chairs with air cushions and I have some very fine pictures one a great oil painting of Gen Karney a large & beautifull map of the seat of the war, all the one that has any right in here is my self & a medical Cadet who is only here evenings, the only trouble I have is I have no stove & it is cold here some days. I think today is the most stormy wintry day we have had here this winter it is snowing & hailing & has since yesterday there has been good slaying here for most a week & I guess there will be for another week by the looks. The river is jamed up full of big Lakes of Ice & looks quite comical, there is no navagation here now the boats have all gone down to York to winter. I have not been to New York since last week, then I was in the Disecting Room & also to Coopers Institute to the Hall of Music on 14th St & the Ampitheater. I went also to see a building in the city that is to cost more than any other two. I do not know what it is to be used for it is on 5the Avenue 23rd St, it is of Solid polished Marble in all shapes & discriptions. I think tho it is to be used for a Theater or something of that discription. Well I have no more to write & shall patiently awate an answer to this or an answer to some of the six other letters I have writen if I have to wate a year. I am your humble & Aff
Son S.F. McOmber.
Curator’s comments: Spencer starts this letter by acknowledging that he has received a letter from his mother by way of a mutual acquaintance, Stewart Grover. However, he is still miffed that she has not mailed him any letters and he threatens to write nothing more to her until she mails him a letter.
This letter is primarily taken up with a discussion of McOmber’s health and his observations about the weather. He offers a detailed description of the office in which he works although he suggests that he would consider giving it up to go to the front with the doctor who has befriended him.
Although he offers few details, Spencer appears to continue his active enjoyment of New York’s cultural life, listing several fine arts venues he has visited.