The Hibernian Historical Trust acquired a winners medal from the 1886/87 Scottish Cup Final.
The medal, one of eighteen cast, was presented to Jerry Reynolds after the 2-1 defeat of Dumbarton at the second Hampden Park (later Cathkin Park) on February 12th 1887. The victory was Hibernian's first in the national competition as well as the first for a team from the East of Scotland.
The front reads "Scottish Football Association" while on the reverse side, the inscription "Scottish Cup. Won by Hibernians 1886-7. J. Reynolds" can be made out.
Unfortunately the prolific Reynolds, signed at only the beginning of the season from Carfin Shamrock, was injured a few days before the final and missed the game. He would play only one season at Easter Road before leaving at the end of the campaign.
The SFA Museum at Hampden was contacted by an individual living in South Africa offering to sell the medal, which had been purchased in a jeweller's shop in Johannesburg over twenty years before. Because the medal related directly to Hibs, museum curator Richard McBrearty contacted the Trust which was delighted to complete the transaction and bring the Scottish Cup winners medal back home.
Controversy surrounded the 1886-87 Scottish Cup Final. After defeating Vale of Leven 3-1 in the semi-final, Hibernian's opponents registered a protest with the SFA, claiming the Easter Road side had fielded a professional player. Vale claimed Hibernian had paid Willie Groves, which was strictly against the rules in those pre-professional days.
An SFA enquiry to hear the complaint, held only a few days before the final, failed to reach a conclusion and a decision was postponed until after the final itself had been played. Three days after their success at Hampden, with the protest finally thrown out when the charge was was found not proven, a verdict reliant on the casting vote of the chairman, Hibs were finally acclaimed worthy Scottish Cup winners.