GPS Rowing: School with the oldest boatshed in the country
TSS was founded in 1901 and its boat club established in 1907, making it the oldest school boatshed in the country.
It is fitting that Southport won the inaugural Head of the River in 1918, then known as the All Schools' Race.
Contested by crews of four, the race had only four starters: Southport, Brisbane Grammar, Brisbane Boys' College (then known as Clayfield College) and Technical College High School.
A photograph of the finish shows Southport crossing the line one and a half boat lengths ahead of Grammar, with BBC third.
Since then, the school has built an enviable record in the race, winning the premier event 21 times and producing many outstanding rowers.
The most illustrious of these is Duncan Free whose achievements are unsurpassed in Queensland GPS rowing history.
Free, 45, rowed in the TSS crew that won the Head of the River in 1989. A four-time Olympian, in 1996 he helped claim the bronze medal in the quad sculls at the Atlanta Olympics.
After rowing in the quad in Sydney and Athens, Free joined with two-time gold medallist Drew Ginn in the coxless pair, winning world championships in 2006 and 2007 and Olympic gold in Beijing in 2008.
At the same time he fitted in coaching his old school to a Head of the River title in 2006 and again, after the worst preparation, last year.
"We had a terrible lead-up," he said.
"A shocking gastro outbreak went through the school. The whole school had to be shut down. We never had eight fit boys. We had to miss half the regattas and raced with fill-ins. No-one expected us to win."
Especially against red-hot favourites Nudgee, who had won the five previous Head of the River titles.
"It was a tribute to their character," he said of his crew.
"Just like in 2006 it was a time of celebration but not for me, for the boys."
For Free, the path to school and Olympic glory began as a youngster on the canal at the back of his parents' Mermaid Waters home at age 10.
Free's father Reg is regarded as Tasmania's finest oarsman and when he moved his family to the Gold Coast in 1983, he took his sons Duncan and Marcus out rowing every morning.
"You could say I learnt to row in the backyard," Free said.
He started at TSS in 1988, soon following Marcus as a star of the First VIII.
"There's a very strong tradition of rowing at the school," he said. "I remember last year when the Head of the River was celebrating its centenary looking at the records and seeing that Southport had won 25 per cent of the time which is pretty amazing.
"We've had some very good coaches and some great runs of success. I think one of the reasons for our success is the set-up we have.
"We're unique in having the boatshed on the school grounds which means the boys don't have to be bussed to and from training."