[Editor’s note: This document is a transcription of the notes in Part A of Section 95 N-1 folder on Letters to Jim Jones, in which members of Peoples Temple – almost all of them residents of Jonestown at the time – described what they would do to the traitors and enemies of the Temple. The notes from part B are here.
[These notes were written in response to questions from Temple leaders. The original spellings are retained.]
If this is going to be a question & answer thing with the traders [traitors] that’s going to LA I think we can have some of our people infertrate [infiltrate] the crowd and the things they talk about the question back at them about what they done in the church. And make them look bad.
Father I don’t have no children two sister and four bros. I don’t have nothing to live for, so I die [for] you my sister and bro here and child. May [Maybe] if some thing would hapen to the plane kill Tim and Grace [Stoen].
This is a good way to get anybody – get them on the freeway. However – push or whatnot. If this done strategic-wise.
L.J.L. [likely Lovie Jean Lucas]
I’d be willing to go back to the States and take care of any enemy you choose.
I feel I’d be a good person to perform this task. First of all, of all the people here in Jonestown I’m probably one of the most expendable because I’m very unskilled in work and as you know I’m not all that happy being here even though working with Cleve has improved my attitude somewhat.
Second, I’m sick of living and wouldn’t have any problems committing suicide after getting rid of the enemy. I think most people consider me stupid and weak-minded but I know how to use a handgun from my security job in San Francisco, and as you say they perhaps wouldn’t suspect me of being an assassin because they think of me as being too innocuous a person to do such a thing.
I have my own motivation for wanting to do this. People like Stoen, Mertles and the things they’ve done are the cause why you can’t go back to the US and see my family and I hate them for that as well as for the lies they told about you and the troubles they’ve caused for the black people young & old here who suffered so much.
At one time a couple months ago you asked me if I could be trusted to go back to the States and do a mission and I said honestly “probably not” because I thought I might get off the plane and head for Illinois & my family, but since my Mom has passed away I don’t have that desire much anymore and I feel I could be trusted to do the job. Other people who really love Jonestown should stay here and build it up, and let me go back. I know you can think up a good plan of action and I believe I can carry it out.
Respectfully, Tom Partak
I would like to help plan it out for the seniors (or whoever or myself) is going to get them, our traitors. Because I have been thinking a lot about this and one of the things I was thinking was that when this is done one way we can get the main one is to have someone follow them around for a while and find out some of the main places they hang out. (Not the ones who are going to get them but some other people and not the same person every day). This is how the ones that were involved in Kennedy’s death. And something different would be plan out so it would be like each one killed each other or died of natural causes. Also they are to observe some of the things they like, things they like to do and things they like to see.
Signed, Vicky Marshall
Dear Dad, I am almost 28 and in good health, still I would like to offer my life in an assassination attempt on Senator [john] Stennis since he is behind the conspiracy with all the traitors that have left our family. I have no hesitation in committing revolutionary suicide. I would also be willing to use my body in whatever way would help us the most. I am not too good at planning strategy but I’m willing to help our cause of Socialism in whatever way I can. I have no personal desire to return to the States, and I am grateful to you for taking myself and my son [William Allan Watkins] in and giving us a home in this beautiful land. Thank you Dad. Betty Moore
I would go back and get Liz Foreman and Lester Kingsolving [Kinsolving]. [Jim] McElvane agreed with me one time that I would be capable of assassination and maybe get by with it. After it was done I would committ self-immolation at an appropriate location.
Ibo (Bob Davis)
From: Bea Orsot Grubbs
Re: Other suggested strategy for former members
Let me go back – contact Liz Foreman whom I was fairly close to. I’ll tell her I was here but left the group while in Georgetown at dentist. Be friendly long enough to be present in a meeting of all of them like I want to join them. Go is explosives either. under clothing or car blow us all up, me too. That would be the end of it.
N-1-A-7b is the reverse side of the note, with the notation “Father, from Bea Orsot Grubbs”
I would like to go back, and/or make Neva [Sly] think that I want to go back. And as soon as I get in hand to throat distance. That would be one less enemy.
Also, or if me and Ujara [Don Sly] go back and act like we miss her soon as we get alone (she is gone). And me and Ujara can go on to the next trader.
N-1-A-8b is the reverse side of the note, with the notation “To Dad To Dad”
I think someone should make a [illegible]. I made one in Redwood Valley scholl and all the cops came.
I am again willing to go & get our enemies. I will make sure that each time I get one. I will be ready to blow myself up. They also would look like accidents. Starting with Tim [Stoen].
I will give my life and don’t mind it
To Dad from J. Barron
We should use 4 strong persons & fast on their feet, as a team, to go back to California, and assassinate 1 at a time, the conspirators. Promote a passport outside the US using fake names. They should keep separate from the church and not contact them. The body’s [bodies] should be destroyed quickly.
after about 4 eliminations the team should come back here.
My plan to get Deanna is to go to SF and get a job as a nurses aid. That would be an easy job for me to get and also they would probably check on me and see I was self-supported and not connected to the Temple. I wouldn’t need a car cause I could use public transportation. I would get in tight with Deanna and get information from them. Then my plan for doing her in would be to take with me some of the poison from our frogs and put it in her food. It would be untraceable as to the type of poison used in an autopsy and therefore be blamed on natural death.
Dad, I would be glad to do something, so you and mother can be relieved from the aggervation [aggravation] of the mess, that hurts us all. I have no family that is interested. Thank you. Marion Campbell
I figure this way Grace Stone [Stoen] has to walk the street sometime at night, so on night when she walking she get raped and murdered, now in the States rape is not in favor of women so that wouldn’t be much feedback. As for who would rape Her I don’t think it matters rather their [whether they’re] male or female.
N-1-A-17-d is the reverse side of the note, with the notation “To Dad”
Dad I think that isn’t that some way to go to the newspaper co. so they want to print they lie. I would like to have some lye & dash it in their eyes. M. [Minnie] Lyles
I feel it would be most effective and demoralizing to our enemies if one of the key traitors would disappear totally and without a trace. This could be accomplished with a few people a rented van and some rugs like the “Tupamaros” did in the film we saw. Just come up behind, blackjack him, wrap him in a rug and drive off.
Another approach along the same line would be to get an ambulance some white uniforms and either blackjack him or manhandle him into a straight jacket [straitjacket] and give him a quick sedative. People who witnessed the pickup are less likely to question or interfere if they think we’re just picking up another “loony”.
I am willing to volunteer to assassinate as many traitors as possible by rifle or poison or any other means and to committ revolutionary suicide before apprehension. I feel with a little training I would stand a good chance to get one or two before removing myself.
If I could get to a conference of traitors, I could detonate myself in their midst and get rid of more.
Thank you Dad
Peter W. [Wotherspoon]
Here is my plan to get Grace or the Myrtle [Mertles]. Let about 4 people see as if they were run out on the Temple and here so the way one of the people could call from the Port of Spain say we need help to get to Mimia [Miami] and tell them to send plane fare for 4 people tell them we are willing to talk about or here. But it will have to be in the works for about 3 months here and in Georgetown and you and the people say we had stole some money and our passport. Dad there is much more I have in my head I would pass on to the office and not to the whole family because some of the things that happened here see to get back there.
Re: Strategy – Fantasy or Feasible?
From Carolyn Looman
I have always felt I ought to be able to infiltrate the traitors either for further information about them or to set them up for destruction, or to expose them as conspirators with inside facts, or to actually (& gleefully) do them in.
This has always seemed like a fantasy idea because I’m not in a position to be entrusted with such a task, nor am I shrewd enough to figure it out – or enact it. But because it’s devastating to hold back the offer, I’m just saying it for the record, & truly meaning it.
Because of my outrageous action in Georgetown, I suppose I could approach the Mertles to see Patricia, & without saying much at all, lead them to believe I was through with the Temple. Leaving it to them to encourage me to act like a traitor, & to aid & abet them. [Handwritten marginal note] I’m sure they think I’m weak.
I suppose there might also be some intelligence to be gained thru my brother, who would only have to know that I still believed in socialism but was through with the Temple (no reason given) and curious to learn more of what had gone on in the last so many months. Again, I know this is a fantasy, but I have it, knowing the risks involved would be nothing compared to the awesome debt I owe you & this cause – for all the good you’ve done & all the treachery I’ve committed.
I’d love to get 10 or 12 of those suckers back there & I might not be old enough but as far as I’m concerned, I’ve lived to be 28 yrs. and that’s long enough to show me that these sons-of-bitches need to be killed. Whatever I had to do to kill some of them I’m willing. Mertle is top on the list.
N-1-A-22b is reverse side of note, crossed out scribble
April 11, 1978
If you think I could perform the service by going back to get any of the criminal conspirators or any other thing you want to do, I would be glad to do it.
I could possibly get in touch with Tim Stoen since you wrote to me and I might be able to establish good relations with Liz Foreman. I don’t think there is any reason I couldn’t get on good footing with several other people. I could put poison in their tea or cocktails.
I’m one of those most of whose life is behind them, and I should be able to do it.
N-1-A-23b is reverse side of note, with the notation “Jim Jones from Edith Roller”
If someone needs to go back to take care of some of our enemies, I would like to be considered. I am 31 and there are so many younger that have lives ahead. Also I feel that I have not done justice to you, this family, or this Socialist cause & this would be one way I could make up for it & I think with some instruction I could carry them out & kill at least one. If necessary to protect you & the family, do myself in allso.
Dad I didn’t here [hear] when you said that, but I’m willing to do any [anything]and get how give us trouble. Thank you my pledge
I’ll go and kill our enemies, and then kill myself. I am way down over the hill. I’ll be delighted to get the Myrtles because 3 of my children lived with her. Then I’ll go get Laura Mae Cornelius I used to take seniors
to her house every time we came to San Francisco, so I’d be very delighted to stick a knife through her heart. I’ve killed before, and had guilt ever since but I can do it now (kill) and feel happy doing so. I have nothing there in the US.
Fr: Bea Orsot Grubbs
We who have relationships sit here, watching & listening to the agony you endure because of it. Everyone of us should be on our feet & on our knees to give the shit up now.
I can’t stand it & will get out of mine immediately. Would have done so earlier as you know but received a message from you that you wanted me in. If you still feel that way, I will stay in it, of course, as I know your reasons not I am willing to give it up now. There’s really nothing to give up. I am well aware of it.
N-1-A-29b is reverse side of note, with the notation “via Marcia or John J.”
Fr: Bea Orsot Grubbs
Re: Suggestion re Stradegy
Now is the time for me to go to Washington DC & set myself afire making demands, while movement goes into the jungle while waiting of offer of asylum to Russia or dropped in Mozambique.
Being an ex-IRS employee may bring more attention.
N-1-A-29d is reverse side of note, with the notation “Dad”
1. Tim Stone is the #1 cause of this, I believe that a number of our security (4 or 6) but first, delay the conference since the meeting is tomorrow and get another date for this conference. Get our security to pin point Tim Stone at the conference or before the conference and used him for baragin [bargaining] power or hold him as a ace card to determine our manovers [maneuvers] to protect our cause of what we stand for. I know this is kidnapp but, right now we are at a do or die matter. We have to stop this madness of all these lies and holding up our shipments to protect our name of People’s Temple. 2. [Their] There has been too many leaks out of information going back to the States. 2 wks before I came over I overheard people talking about tape unites where going to take from the people. Whatever we work out to
to determine our stragagy we have to secure our information with security and the people. Their has been to [too] many right on the head statements that gets back to the States. Example, other people besides you know your ready to go and the day you might be leaving. So I hope we’ll be able to keep this under controll.
I also Dad would like to join the security (SATT) team.
Thank you, Dad
Dad, I never said anything to you about anything. I’m not just saying things, I’ll do them. Just give me a gun where I can stick it in my bosum and let me go. I’m for real. FBI picked me up before and had me in jail trying to make me talk. I’d die for this cause. I know places to go in LA. What they have me in jail for was my dead sister’s 2 kids. FBI said I kidnapped them. I never told them anything. I’ve had a gun since I was 13. I know how to use it.
I am a senior and I am willing to go and fight for this cause, and also do my kindred in. My life has no purpose but [to] live for socialism, and I am willing to give up my life so socialism will live on.
Re: What option I would choose if the fascists took over
The jungle because in the jungle, first of all, we would have some protection in the jungle. In the jungle we should make our “stand” and fight; personally I would choose to commit revolutionary suicide, after which I would first do what I could to help the seniors, I would fire on as many fascists as I could, even if I only got one! Moreso I only know that one will die, before I would committ revolutionary suicide!
Anyway I think that the jungle is the place to make our stand, because if we made our standard city here in Jonestown, sure what we would do good the first battle, but it would be a waste to stay here, because many and all children would have to committ revolutionary suicide. Moreso in the jungle we could [go] to Venezuela and how our people go to Russia, because in Russia we would be able to send people to fight in Rhodesia or go to Ethiopia and help fight in Somalia.
I apologize Dad for last night, because I did not speak on the “option” of making a stand to fight. I will learn from now on, listen like hell, whatever news you give! I do apologize for last night, because to me that is a guilt – speaking on miscellaneous heresay [hearsay]!
Suggestion: That I could go to Los Angeles and “snuff” out Tim Stoen! To snuff Stoen being a handicap, I don’t think no one would even say anything. Moreso I could do like “The Day of the Jacel [Jackal]” only to kill Stoen and take revolutionary suicide
Dad I am Alma Thomas. If it was [wasn’t] for you I wood [would have] died a long time ago my hip socket are you my breath are you I will do what you want me to do. Please use me. Why no [not] use someone like a telephone man and wire the place up.
I am very sorry that I don’t know the Myrtles, Grace, and Tim Stone and all the other people that is trying to bring this family to their needs, and hurt you for they know that you have love and are concern [concerned] about all of us. I would like to go back and get them all at our time. If I knew how to get them with one blow and that would be a bomb. So I rather stay here and fight. I am quiet, don’t talk to [too] much but I am with this Socialist Movement all the way. Thank you for my health it is much better since I’ve been here. I want you to know I love Jonestown and I don’t want to go to Russia or anyplace else. I want to stay in Jonestown and keep on fighting. I will give my life here and don’t mind doing it, for I am not scared to die not at all. The blood pressure pill I take makes me sleepy. I try hard to stay awake don’t want to cause you pain or any trouble on my part, I can grow by looking and listening and trying to hold the news in my mine [mind].
I tried to have principle but I am learning more and more from you and Mother. My life have been slow, so many things I have not experienced and I am 60 yrs old. Have I missed anything and because I am slow and don’t speak out is that bad. I have been slow and quiet as long as I can think, tell me yes or know [no]. I try to know myself and I want to know myself. I love this family and also Jonestown. I am happy here. Thanks for the food, like the chicken, I find no fault not with any of the food all good to me. Thank [you] for living in the Troolie, I just can’t thank you enough, tried to make this note short. Thank [you] for the love and concern you have for this whole family.
Thanks again, Dad,
Dad: I feel that whoever does the job of taking care of those fools should be someone who they think would not move to anything. They have never seen me bothered or acting as I would do anything because I kept it hid much as possible. Now I wouldn’t mind showing up at one of their meeting and wiped out Diane Mutler [Deanna Mertle] without a word unless I could have a bomb to get the whole group or I can act like I want to join them and be nice and wait on everybody when they would want something to drink or eat and put something in it.
That would not take long to put a person to sleep. I have heard of a case like this. Or this could be done to just leave them hanging on forever but not die. I feel that there are others that work hard to help keep this work going would do this but is needed. In the past I have wanted to do something to get out, I don’t think it would be hard for me to just blow off their heads and take care of myself afterwards. It[‘]s not that I don’t like being here but is tired of their shit comming in here. Thanks.
[marginal note] Step 1. Ruby Carroll and 3 other to do this job and come back here. Diane Lundquist sister would be better]
These four people run off for GT [Georgetown] with there [their] passport and three hounder [hundred] between them and they stole some paper of very importance and runoff to Port of Spain and then to New York. I would do it this way. Go to Mimi [Miami] drive across country to meet them someplace that we could set up. I do not know if my child could be count [counted] on to help in any way.
And we would need Jean Brown & Leona [Collier] help on the other end. I will get Janie [Jeannie] Mills and here [her] children and I know that Grace will be look[ing] for someone else and she will run and run right to us in the money that they give us will bring us back I know the suit of $500,000. If I have a change of heart and try to help other before they leave the state [States]. I think that we should stay in Mimai for apast to get away and there is a chance that our boat could be nearby to help us out and I think that anyone could do this kind of job should make a pack that if anyone tried to run kill here or him.
There is more.
Maria – Suzann
Tim Stone [Stoen] – Baker
Myrtles [Mertles] – Swartzes
Points – These vicious people [Baker] white man marring [marrying] a black woman and stir his parents up. Young 24-year-old woman Suzann in our church her parents have been contacted by Baker & Swartzes there claiming that she can’t go alone that we have bodyguards with her all the time. You can call the US Embassy and see that’s a lie. These people tried to get the US Embasy to cooperate with them in kidnapping. Suzan’s dad [Jim Jones] had molested her has a long physical record. They claimed that her dad can’t meet with her. When she has met with him
Grover Davis worked in the San Francisco Kitchen. Just before I left, he was very upset because L.C. [Lee Charles Mitchell] had quite [quit] his job and moved to Seattle Washington.
Lue Ester [Lewis]
I think Mickey Touchette lives across the street from Leona Collier. We noticed her going into the same house on different occasions. A brother opened the door for her, we couldn’t make out his face.
When he found out I was in the church he wanted to take me out & my “grandmother” (who’s visited us at RWV [Redwood Valley] and met Jack & Rhevina [Jack and Rheaviana Beam] and call you & Mother “saints”). She told him as long as I was happy to leave me alone.
Maybe this is an angle I could use – Talk to her?
Sherwin knows the church took care of me when I had a back surgery – and told me on the phone that he appreciated that.
Liane [Harris, daughter of Sherwin Harris]
My Dad is probably slightly hostile toward the church because I spent so much time there and eventually moved to the apt. My sister Judy DeSargent, also go under the name Judy Jackson and Ann Fonzelle came to the church once, left the meeting. She said she would kill Jim Jones because he was frightening my niece by the way he was talking. My brother Tony Fonzelle said that Dad should talk more about religion. When I was in the states they watched the news quite a bit. By trying to start trouble over Tanac.
N-1-A-48 page is illegible
People love to sit around a barbershop and talk – let me get a [illegible word] back there and get some of these little frogs, check out FROGS, and I will serve some frog sandwiches or whatever. I am old enough.
Sincerely, Lovie Jean Lucas
N-1-A-49b is reverse side of 49a, with single word “Johnnie”
The people that should go back into the States are basically the unknown people ones that were not of P.C. [Planning Commission] or on the council board.
I consider all of them a class one enemy, the way they should be killed, is in the reverse order they left the Cause or by the cities and counties they live in, farthest cities first. Each one should die by sianide [cyanide] gas, or explosives.
Perhaps some of the dogs that we have in Redwood Valley could be driven down to the LA Temple. A senior could easily lose control of several big dogs at the right time.
N-1-A-51b is reverse side of note, with single word “Suggestion”
Put me with somebody who knows these people and we could get them. We could blow them up, we could kill them. I have died too many times and I don’t mind dying. Gabriel [Dennis] was dying in my arms when I came into the church, and you healed him. You can burn them, blow them up. After you kill them they can be buried and nobody will ever know what happen [happened] to them. You can choke and strangle them, make them look like they had heart attacks. It has to be people you can trust. We might not get all of them, but one or two.
Make it just like were having a party, and then when the news people and them come up, have somebody there at the party to whip their asses good.
Dad, I would like to be in the group that goes back to take care of our enemies whether it is in the near or distent [distant] future.
N-1-A-54b is reverse side of note, with notation, “To Dad”
Give me my shit back and make reservations for me (1) to Trinidad or Cuba from Miami, (2) Cuba to Georgetown by cargo plane, and I’ll take care of the Mills in Berkeley & Stone [Tim Stoen] in SF if he is there in one day. I would only have one chance and I would have to move fast.
PS (1) Leona [Collier] could be my only contact.
(2) I need to go to Barbados then US by smaller airline
N-1-A-55b is reverse side of note, with single notation “JJ”
I already said I would go back and do away with Tim Stoen, Myrtles [Mertles] and as many others as I could get. I will do so now if need be at any time.
N-1-A-57a – 57d, illegible note
I am another one that [Garry] Lambrev – [Liz] Forman thought of as an easy prey. I volunteered to go back to earlier. I am still prepared to go.
My personal vengeance would be with Gary but I would try to kill Mertles & Stones – try to set up a “meeting” & blow the fuckers to hell.
I still think I could disguise it with a cover of a sexual triangle to keep the church “clear” – That is a revenge trip. I wrote up a more elaborate description before. This note is merely a reminder.
In fact – several white nites later – I’m even more prepared to do it. I’ve had enough since I’ve been here to make this life worth living & enough of your example to break thru my fears.
PS I have no children here – no legal tangles – having had cancer already there’s no reason to believe in a long life – not to mention the constant plotting of the capitalist pigs against us.
If I were to do it, I would supposedly “escape” from here – and ask for Lambrev’s help. People here could be told whatever – in case there’s a leak from here.