Report from the California Historical Society

New staff, new hours, and new plans highlight this year’s report from the California Historical Society. Mary Morganti, Director of Research Collections, joined the CHS staff in an office right off the main room of the North Baker Research Library. She is advising on the processing and cataloguing work on the Peoples Temple Archive and related collections to make the finding aids accessible on the internet.

Thanks to generous funding from a Library Services and Technology Act grant from the California State Library, the CHS Library has also expanded its hours to four days a week and has eliminated admission fees.

Plans to recognize the 25th anniversary of Jonestown in the next year center around an exhibit of materials from the Peoples Temple collections in conjunction with the San Francisco History Center of the San Francisco Public Library on the sixth floor at the Main Library.

The CHS Library supports scholarly and family-related research in the Peoples Temple Archive and related collections. Researchers over the past year have displayed a wide range of interests in the collection, from the roles of politicians in the Temple’s history to investigations into the organization’s finances. Researchers have indicated they are working on scholarly articles, documentary films, and plays.

The North Baker Research Library is open to the public Wednesday through Saturday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm. Our email is You can also call us at 415-357-1848 ext. 20 to schedule your visit. Although it is not required to make an appointment ahead of time, we can have materials ready for you to start looking through if you contact us before your visit.