Rare Lombardi-era items donated to the Packers Hall of Fame Inc.

By Millaine Wells, Local 5 News

Published 04/29 2014 03:56PM

Updated 04/29 2014 07:32PM

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) - A former Packers player from the Vince Lombardi era is giving fans a glimpse into history.

He made a donation to the Packers Hall of Fame Inc.

"It brings back some memories, stuff you forget about" says former Packers player Bill Butler.

His sport coat is the first donation of its kind, for the Packers Hall of Fame Inc.  

"He went to his closet, pulled these things out and said take these with you" explains Tom Murphy, Board Member of the Hall of Fame Inc.

"After 55 years I am not going to miss it in my closet " Butler says with a laugh.

The Berlin, Wisconsin native led the packers in punt returns in 1959.

He was drafted that year by a brand new head coach, named Vince Lombardi.

"I really appreciate what he did and he really made it a strong organization" Butler says.  

Coach Lombardi handpicked the jackets for the team to wear on the road.

He wanted the men to look good and play even better.

"I think he put forth the first week when he sent about three of them to the hospital that he was running the snow and we were not going to accept losing" Butler recalls.

Butler also donated his Packers basketball uniform.

The exhibition team traveled the state in the offseason to grow the Packers following.

They even took on the Harlem Globetrotters.

"These guys could have beat us 150 to nothing, but we did play one quarter with a football, so we did all right there" Butler says.

It is stories like this that will live on through his donation.

"I just hope they let me in free" he jokes about the exhibit.

While the Packers Hall of Fame is under construction at Lambeau Field, fans can see some memorabilia, including these new donations, at the Neville Museum.

The touchdown exhibit is expected to be open until early 2015.

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