Guyana Legislation to Incorporate Peoples Temple

In order for Peoples Temple to establish an agricultural mission and branch church in the Northwest District in Guyana, it had to incorporate itself within the South American country, so that it could enter into legal contracts – to open bank accounts, to buy and lease property and equipment, to hire Guyanese workers for some of the initial construction in Jonestown – and give substance to the plans the organization had made with Guyana’s poltical leaders.

This letter of 4 December 1974 from the Clerk of the Guyana National Assembly to the offices of Clarence Hughes, a Georgetown attorney representing the Temple, includes a late draft of the legislation which incorporated the Temple in Guyana. It is likely not the final language of the bill that passed, since it includes handwritten changes in the list of officers on the Temple’s Board of Directors. Nevertheless, it is the only copy which the FBI recovered in Jonestown following the deaths in November 1978.

A set of Articles of Association adopted in June 1978 appears here.

Guyana Legislation to Incorporate Peoples Temple, RYMUR 89-4286-A-31-a-17, pp. a-d (This is the best available copy)
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Last modified on March 11th, 2017.
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