The Jim Jones Archive: An Introduction

In 2022, I launched the Jim Jones Archive. After several years of activity on this subject, this seemed like the next logical step. With it came an idea to build a museum devoted to Jim Jones.

The purpose of the museum would be to provide a single location for visitors to view a wide variety of items, documents and information relating to the life of the leader of Peoples Temple. While other archives that chronicle the history of Peoples Temple and Jonestown don’t place Jones as the focal point, mine would do so. I also intend for the exhibits to be wide-ranging enough that it will require multiple visits to see everything.

The physical building may not exist yet – and realistically will take some time to complete – but The Jim Jones Archive or “JJ HQ” is already in operation and managed singlehandedly.

As always, I invite people to share descriptions or photos of memorabilia, genuine artifacts, anything important or rare. If you’re willing to part with something in your possession, we can have that discussion too. I would like to receive more authentic pieces to add to the collection, not as a private collector as I was prior to launching this effort, but as a curator. Even if it is not your intention to sell, I’m still interested in hearing from you. Items that are in existence after all these years are of great interest, and I would like to include them in my documentation. Any details I’m able to catalogue are helpful for general research and for this archive I’m working on.

(Jolene McDonald is an admin of the Facebook group Jim Jones Cult Leader created in February 2018, and the creator of a blog – the Jim Jones Information Blog – to share some of the informative posts from the group. The posts from the blog also appear here.

(Her other articles in this edition of the jonestown report are Beyond Lynetta, Six Unique Books, and Shedding Light on Jonestown: The Forensic Photos. Her collected works on this site are here.)