Hibernian were formed in the Cowgate area of Scotland’s capital Edinburgh in 1875. The club was named after the classical Latin name for the Island of Ireland and founded by football enthusiasts in Edinburgh’s Cowgate Irish Community as a means of raising revenue to fund the needs of the Irish poor and providing sporting involvement for members of the Catholic Church. There is then a charitable purpose behind the club similar to those principles that led to the formation of Glasgow Celtic in 1888 and Dundee United in 1909.
With ambitions that mirrored those of the city in which it is located, Hibernian progressed from humble beginnings into being the first British football club to participate (by invitation) in the first ever European Cup of 1955.
First crowned Scottish National champions in 1903 – just one year after winning their second Scottish Cup – the golden period of Hibernian’s domestic history was during the late 1940’s and 1950’s when the club won three league championships; 1948, 1951 and 1952. This record was largely attributed to the heroic performances of the clubs celebrated ‘Famous Five’ forward line of Gordon Smith, Bobby Johnstone, Lawrie Reilly, Eddie Turnbull and Willie Ormond.
With a golden period of participation in European football across the 50’s, 60’s and early 70’s, Hibernian have endured mixed fortunes since 1970’s, resisting takeover by inner city rivals Hearts, welcoming George Best for a spell and contending with relegation from the top tier.
Perhaps the highlight of the clubs existence came during May 2016 when the club won the Scottish Cup for the first time in 114 years against Glasgow Rangers at Hampden Park.
See an album of Hibs images here taken during a club open day in 2017