Tom. You were at Wimbledon, at the great national rifle meeting. By all the accounts I have seen of it, it must have been a great success; but I should like to hear some of the details from an eye-witness; so tell me about it, for I was confined to my post here by work of all sorts.
Jack. I will; but, remember, I was not present the whole time, as my avocations called me back to London nearly every day. You shall have, and welcome, what passed under my own observation; and I will also give you some thoughts that have occurred to me since.
T. Do so.
J. The first thing that struck one was the complete mixture of classes; – it forced itself on your notice immediately, and although in the formation of our company I had been somewhat accustomed to it, it did not come so home as when I saw it on a large scale, and amongst strangers. There were men holding the highest social positions mixing us equals with others not so fortunately placed, and along the whole line of civil society. It came off something in this shape: the volunteers were formed into squads, each about sixteen strong, and the officer in charge took the names down on a paper, the surnames only, and then called them out-as they came, without titles or additions of any kind, thus, Bowling, Buckshorn, Johnson, Childers, Clasper, &c. The first might be a peer, the second a working man, the third a shopkeeper, the fourth a yeoman, the fifth a captain in the Guards, and so on. There they stood, shoulder to shoulder, intent on the same object, to test their skill in a generous rivalry and the volunteer uniform showed no difference.