Larry Schacht Memo to Jim Jones

Cyanide is one of the most rapidly acting poisons. I had some misgivings about its effectiveness but from further research I have gained more confidence in it, at least theoretically. I would like to give about two grams to a large pig to see how effective our batch is to be sure we don’t get stuck with a disaster like would occurr [occur] if we used thousands of pills to sedate the people and then the cyanide was not good enough to do the job. I also want to order antedotes [antidotes] just in case we may need to reverse the poisoning process on people. Eli Lilly Co. puts out a kit or we could buy the chemicals.

  1. Sodium nitrite
  2. sodium thiosulfate both for Intravenous administration. We should get enough for about two hundred people.

Cyanide may take up to three hours to kill but usually is [it] is within minutes. If it had to be reversed it could be without significant damage to the central nervous system. Symptoms of cyanide poisoning are Increase of respiratory rate at first and then depression, blue color, Headache, loss of consciousness, asphyxia and seizures which precede death (often).

An article I want from S.F. [San Francisco] Naughton M. Acute cyanide poisoning. Anseth Intensive care 2:351, 1974. We could say that a child was brought in to our free medical clinic who had ingested rat poison containing cyanide and we want this article on the subject.

Sorry I said “I would like to kill Debbie Blakey” In front of Jeff C [Carey]. He was not asking or prying. I was thinking out loud and forgot that you had not informed the collective. I will be damn careful in the future.

I think all workers in Georgetown should be required to have a good political understanding and be sensitive to the world struggle. Obviously have some talents which make them valuble [valuable] in the city but with out the political enlightenment they are dangerous. Information could be taken to them or they could be required to hand in five pages each two weeks about a book they are reading on communism, or the black liberation effort and you could get a good idea about where their committment [commitment] to the theoretical (and apparently essential) aspects of our movement Is and just how they relate to the cause. The more I hear and learn about the events in the world the less I tend to be Illusionary about life. Thank you for pointing out that I am holding on to life too much.

I think we should kill debbie B. even though this is not pragmatic and in fact could drive suicidal people into traitorous acts just to elicit a vengeful murderous ac from the group. Leaving People’s Temple is a form of suicide. It is suicide. I was grateful that I was included in the plan the other night as I was able to help out with Lillies [likely Lillie Mae Victor] water retention and urological disorder. I would not have minded taking the full responsibility for that therapeutic recommendation and that is one disease I feel morally responsible to cure.

I have some radio consultations I would like to get taken care of soon. I have requested to do so but apparently there has not been opportunity.

Larry Schacht