Thomas Jefferson High School Historical Preservation Society


The TJHS Historical Preservation Society is always interested in stories about Thomas Jefferson High School, its alumni and the community.

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  • Sun, September 06, 2020 4:19 PM | Anonymous

    Good Afternoon Everyone:

         We are excited to announce that we have recently closed the current ordering period for memory bricks. If you have placed an order between March of 2019 thru August 2020 your order is currently being processed with our brick vendor for fabrication with an installation projected for later this fall. Once the installation has been completed we will be notifying all participants with conformation and location information in relation to the campus flag pole.


    TJHSHPS Executive Board

  • Sun, February 23, 2020 4:36 PM | Anonymous

    The TJHSHPS is excited to be part of the Thomas Jefferson HS 2020 "International Baccalaureate World School's MYP - Personal Project Exhibition".

    The exhibit will be open on Friday, March 20, 2020 during three times

    9:00a - 11:00a

    1:00p - 3:00p

    4:30p - 6:30p

  • Sun, February 16, 2020 4:37 PM | Anonymous

    The Conservation Society has officially awarded the TJHSHPS the 2020 Historic Preservation Award for the Built Environment for the restoration of the Student Council Patio Fountain.

  • Sat, February 01, 2020 4:43 PM | Anonymous

    Please pardon our dust as we will be working on several updates to our website thru the month of February. Be sure to re-visit us in March to check out all the layout & content updates!

  • Wed, October 03, 2018 6:00 PM | Anonymous member

    April 18, 2018

    We can see it, touch it, almost taste it!

    Progress on the fountain is so encouraging, and the entire Board is ecstatic. We wish each of you could feel like we do when we go see the progress.

    Fountain under constructionA shot of the fountain with the frogs.

    We had little time at this meeting other than working out at the fountain with the tile folks deciding on color matches and seeing the latest version of the frogs. As many original tiles as possible will remain on the fountain, but many were damaged and need to be replaced. There are a variety of colors involved for the ledge around the top of the inner pool and the outside of that pool. The tiles were glazed in green, brick red, yellow, and black. We compared them to the tiles that will remain on the fountain for the sake of matching. We soon discovered that the original tiles are not all the same color. There are variations in the red/orange that lean toward one color or the other and in the yellows that range from an ocher to a more true yellow. We decided, along with advice from both the tile manufacturer and the installer, to make differing percentages of the tiles in each of the colors and mix them just as the originals are.

    The green tile.

    One of the new reds next to an original.

    Black on black.

    Larry Stevens, Class of 1969, brought the final frog design with several different coatings of colors ranging from an oxidized green to copper to a dark tint. We chose to go with a medium tint of the green oxidized color. The contractor who is doing the water for the fountain showed us how the frogs will work, each of three frogs spewing a stream of water into the middle of the inner pool. He told us how the stream can be adjusted individually for each frog. The piping and control valves for the water are already installed, along with the controls for the float valve that will regulate the fountain's water level.

    Once all of our decisions were made, we adjourned our outside gathering and met again in the office in the Main Hall where we normally meet. Other topics discussed include the ongoing drive to sell memory bricks and a promotional video we are having produced to educate the public on the importance of Jefferson and on your role in maintaining it's legacy through TJHS HPS.

  • Tue, May 16, 2017 8:10 PM | Anonymous member

    September 19, 2017

    Progress on the Student Council Fountain Restoration

    Representatives from various construction, architectural, and trades firms who are members of the fountain restoration team were present at the September 20th Board Meeting. Each spoke briefly about their companies and the part they will play in the process.

    James Gray of Rialto Studios began with a state-of-the-project introduction. He noted that the synergy created by the meeting of the team members was shaping the project as better ideas were formulated with all the minds together.

    Burditt Tile presented the tile restoration plan. A component of this plan that is dictated by the Historical Design Review Board is that all of the tiles that are removed must be saved as historical materials. Not all tiles are being removed. Whichever tiles are still basically intact will remain. All others will be replaced.

    Dunis Studios, tilemakers in Wimberly, Texas, showed samples of the tiles they hand make in their factory. The process was briefly explained. Dunis assured the Board that the tiles would be expertly matched, with only surface finish varying somewhat due to aging of the original tiles. Dunis clients of note are the McNay Art Institute, the King Ranch, The San Pedro Park Library, and the University of Texas at Austin.

    Larry Stevens (TJHS Class of 1969), owner of Stevens Art Foundry will create the 3 bronze frogs for the fountain. His notable projects are the Juan Seguin Memorial, various works at Notre Dame University, Texas A&M Bonfire Memorial, and the Texas Ranger Monument.

    The managing contractor for the project, Guido Construction, introduced their project manager and presented construction details and a preliminary budget of $181,000. There are options that will either increase or decrease the budget as they are accepted or rejected, and a construction contingency of $10,000 is earmarked.

    Other contractors not represented were Fountain Works, Mission Plumbing, Sculptural Design, Big State Electric, and Hunt Concrete.

    It has been a long haul to this point, but the work and wait has been worth it as we see the imminent restoration of the Student Council fountain.

    July 28, 2017

    Student Council Fountain
    Restoration Underway

    The Thomas Jefferson High School Historical Preservation Society is pleased to announce that the restoration of the Student Council fountain is finally under way thanks to the generous contributions of so many Foundations and individuals all sharing a passion and fondness for Thomas Jefferson High School.

    Guido Brothers Construction Company will serve as the General Contractor for this project, given their extensive experience in the restoration of numerous projects having historical significance.

    On July 27th, 2017, some of the Directors for the Thomas Jefferson high School Historical Preservation Society met with several companies at the School who will play a vital role in this restoration project. These include Burditt Tile & Stone, Inc., Sculptural Designs Atelier, Fountain Works, as well as SAISD. This meeting allowed those subcontractors an opportunity to do an onsite visit to observe existing conditions in an effort to come up with their pricing for the project.

    Special Thanks goes to James Gray with Rialto Studio, Inc. for taking this journey with the Thomas Jefferson High School Historical Preservation Society and who was instrumental in helping lay the ground work so that this project could commence.

    March 21/April 18, 2017

    Student Council Fountain

    At the March 21st Board Meeting, Jim Gray of Rialto Studios presented their proposal to create construction drawings for the contractor, observe the construction process to ensure adherence to the intent of the drawings, and take part in planning and progress meetings, They added a contingency for other consultants and incidentals. The proposal is limited to a total cost no greater than $12,250 at which time any further services required by the board will be charged at an hourly rate. The proposal was unanimously approved by the board members present. It is expected that construction will take place during the summer months. 

    Memory Bricks

    Fifty percent of the area of the circle and spokes around the flagpole has been filled. There are 42 new orders for the next batch.

    2017 Fiesta Medal

    It is expected that all of the Fiesta Medals will be sold before Fiesta begins. Only 4 remain at one of the locations selling them (see below). Once these are sold, the medal effort will have raised another $3,500 for the fountain project!

    May 16, 2017

    Student Council Fountain

    $200,000 is available in the TJHS HPS funds for the restoration of the fountain. The "dance" between partners, the private non-profit (TJHS HPS) and the public owner of the school (SAISD) is going well. Conversations with the head of SAISD's facilities made it clear that the District is the arbiter of who does the construction on campus, and the board is anxious to work with them to get the process started. 

    Memory Bricks

    An additional 23 brick orders were received since the April 18 meeting, bringing the total for the next batch to 65.

    554 have been laid to date. The figure below shows where the bricks have been laid. Another 555 will fill the entire circle and spokes around the flagpole. Several other areas are available once this one is filled.

  • Tue, April 18, 2017 8:51 PM | Anonymous member

    Texas Historical Commission Review

    Let's start with a quote from a letter from Sara Ludueña, a THC project reviewer:

    &quot;We find that the proposed work of the fountain is appropriate and consistent with the Secretary of the Interior&#39;s Standards for Rehabilitation.&quot;

    Yes! Another step toward bringing the fountain back to its original beauty!

    Things that were emphasized by Ms. Ludueña as their understanding of the project were:

    Much of the historic tile is to be replicated and replaced

    The depth of the fountain will be changed to match existing codes [Ed.:As the fountain is right now, it must be classified as a swimming pool because of its depth]

    The frog-shaped spouts on the edge of the upper tier will be reconstructed.

    Join us in celebrating this milestone in the Fountain Project.

    Read the letter in its entirety.

  • Fri, March 03, 2017 6:12 PM | Anonymous member

    Introducing "Board Notes"

    The projects undertaken by the HPS are, by nature, a long series of baby steps. It is difficult to represent the whole of a project on this site without repeating much of what you read before. Because of this, we have decided to begin publishing "Board Notes" in which we will present these baby steps, so that you, our members know what progress is being made.

    There are two types of projects in which we engage, restoration/preservation and fundraising. The first type requires that we do the second type. So, in our inaugural notes, we tell you the latest on the Fountain Restoration Project and the Mustang Legacy Brick Project.

    The Fountain

    01/17/2017 - James Gray, an landscape architect with Rialto Studios in San Antonio presented the tile restoration plans (see PDF) to the Historical Design Review Commission (HDRC), showing which tiles might be saved and which needed to be replaced (approx. 30%).

    The Commission surveyed the fountain and made their recommendations, asserting that as many tiles as could be reasonably repaired should remain.

    Mr. Gray will present a set of drawings to represent their findings to the HRDC and then to the Texas Historical Commission (THC), who must also weigh in..

    The Bricks

    02/21/2017 - Bricks #1-252 were laid on April 19, 2016. Bricks #253-554 were laid on January 25, 2017. Fifty percent of the space around the flagpole now holds "memory bricks (pictured)."

  • Thu, December 15, 2016 8:29 PM | Anonymous member

    Fountain Restoration Project
    on the Move!

    Restoration of the Student Council fountain took a step forward on Wednesday (November 2nd) when the Historic and Design Review Commission (HDRC) gave final approval for the Thomas Jefferson High School Historical Preservation Society's project application.

    James Gray, landscape architect at Rialto Studio in San Antonio, Sylvia Aguilar and Dana Ward (both TJHSHPS Board members) were present at the hearing. This milestone clears the way for TJHSHPS to pursue approval by the Texas Historical Commission.

    Alumni who want to be a part of the ongoing efforts of the TJHSHPS to preserve, conserve, and educate can contribute to the success of the fountains restoration with donations or by buying a Mustang Legacy Circle memory brick.

  • Sat, October 15, 2016 8:31 PM | Anonymous member

    When Will I See My Memory Brick? 

    Many of you who have ordered bricks want to know when they will be installed. Since we pay for a full day of labor each time the brick layers come out, we are doing the installations in batches.

    The fist batch of 252 bricks was laid on April 19, 2016.

    All orders received by November 30, 2016 will be submitted in the second batch to our vendor for engraving.

    Update: 01/25/2017 - The second batch of bricks was laid today, bringing the total to 554.

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Thomas Jefferson High School Historical Preservation Society, PO Box 5567, San Antonio, TX 78201-0557

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