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The first rules of the Hibernian Football Club in 1875 states that the players should provide at their own expense; Caps, white Guernsey's displaying a Harp on the left breast, and white trousers with green stripes.

However there is no evidence to support that any game took place with the players wearing this apparel.

After only half a dozen games or so, by the start of the 1876-77 season, photographs show the team wearing Green and White Hooped jerseys with the letters HFC displayed in large black letters on the chest and white trousers. It is unlikely, particularly in the early days, that a club from a deprived area of the city would have had two sets of jerseys, and most historians now think that the Hooped jersey was the first to be worn by the club.


1870s Jersey


The strip would be worn in several prominent games, including Hibs first ever Scottish Cup tie in 1877, the ill fated Floodlit experiment at Powderhall in 1878, and the clubs first ever cup success after victory over Hearts in the final of the Edinburgh Association Cup in 1879.

By the turn of the decade the playing kit would have changed to dark all green jerseys and would alter little, apart from varying collar styles, until 1933 when a distinctive white collar was added.

In a game against Hamilton at Easter Road at the start of the 1938-39 season, to the surprise of all those present, the Hibs players took the field wearing a new look Emerald green jersey with white collars and sleeves, a strip that is now familiar to us all.

The replica jersey in the photograph was specially made for the play 'The Hibs Story' which ran in the Kings Theatre in September 1996. The play, starring Russell Hunter and Hibs fan Una McLean, traced the history of the club from its humble beginnings in the Cowgate in 1875 to the then present day, and included the 'unofficial' World Championship success in 1887, the League Championship wins, and the famous victories over Barcelona and Real Madrid in the 1960's.

The jersey was later donated to the Hibernian Historical Trust, and at present it is on display in the Easter Road Boardroom.

If you can add to any historical article, perhaps with special memories, a favourite story or the results of your original research, the Hibernian Historical Trust would love to hear from you.
You can kindly contribute by contacting us HERE.