Since 1932, the Thomas Jefferson High School Lassos have reflected the unique heritage of the school in San Antonio, Texas. A service, performance and spirit organization, the Lassos have made a difference in young women's lives by helping them develop as leaders and encouraging academic excellence.
In the decades since the Lassos' founding, changing economic conditions, demographics, and income levels in the San Antonio Independence School District contributed to the dwindling of the number of Lassos from around 200 through the 1960s to less than 20 girls in 2010s.
Realizing the importance of the Lasso experience, concerned alumni founded the TJHS Lasso Alumni in 2007. The LAA helps current Lassos understand and appreciate the history of the organization, while fostering personal pride in each of its members. The LAA is dedicated to preserving Lasso traditions and helping every girl realize her Lasso dream. We also provide financial assistance, scholarships, and mentoring to current Lassos. We are a 501(c)3 organization.
Unfortunately, over the years, many historical documents and photos relating to the rich history of Lassos were lost. The LAA decided to write a book about the Lasso experience to help re-create some of these lost photos and documents and preserve the Lasso Legacy, an experience that has meant so much to so many young women.
The Lasso Legacy—Then and Now| More Than Roping captures the history of the Lassos, beginning with their founding in 1932. It explains the times and the values instilled in the program by its founders. It also describes the culture that gave birth to the Lasso Legacy as Thomas Jefferson High School was chosen out of 1,500 high schools as the most outstanding high school in America.
Almost as soon as they were founded, the Lassos became internationally recognized for their western style uniforms and trick roping skills. The Lasso Legacy—Then and Now | More Than Roping provides insight into Lasso founder Constance Douglas Reeves. A Texas legend, she was inducted into the Cowgirl Hall of Fame and the New York Times ran obituary, which is included in the book.
The book records high points in the history of the Lasso organization and includes some never-before-seen photos contributed by former Lassos as well as documents and photos from the Lasso archives. Highpoints in the Lasso history include:
Their appearance on the cover of Life Magazine in 1938.
Their trip to the World's Fair in New York City, where they performed and were guests of Vice President John Nance Garner and automobile maker Henry Ford. They also had tea with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.
Their appearance in "High School," a Twentieth Century Fox movie featuring Jane Withers, that featured life at Jefferson and the Lassos. It was released in 1940.
Throughout the years, the Lassos served as goodwill ambassadors for the City of San Antonio, welcoming celebrities, and dignitaries from John Wayne to Rex Allen and often performing for them. They continuously have worked to show off their school pride and make Jefferson High School known for excellence in our community and throughout the world.
The distinctive uniform, roping skills and rich history have left hundreds of young women with lasting memories. Once a Lasso, Always a Lasso!