25th Anniversary Reflections and Observations

Houses in Jonestown, May 1979
Houses in Jonestown, May 1979

The articles below offer a wide range of perspectives on the life of Peoples Temple, the deaths in Jonestown, and the 25 years that have passed. All were written by former members and relatives of the people who died. While each individual story brings a powerful voice to any consideration of the events of 18 November 1978, their totality contributes to an even more important – if sometimes cacophonous – body of work. For that reason, these stories represent the foundation for an online collection of perspectives which we hope will grow over the years.

We invite other members and families of Peoples Temple – whatever your views on the tragedy of Jonestown and the factors that led to its end – to join in this chorus. Contact us at remoore@sdsu.edu so that we may add your story.

  1. Drinking the Kool-Aid by Mike Carter
  2. The Big Grey by Tim Carter
  3. Reflections by Gene and June Cordell
  4. The Voice by Vern Gosney
  5. Patti Chastain Haag – A Remembrance by Michael Haag
    1. Shade by Patti Chastain Haag (1992)
  6. Linda Harris: A Remembrance by Virgil Miller
  7. The Writings of Stephan Jones
    1. Like Father, Like Son
    2. Angels
  8. A Different Course by Laurie Efrein Kahalas
  9. A Temple Member’s Odyssey by Laura Johnston Kohl
  10. The Longest Twenty Years by Bryan Kravitz
  11. Questions That Remain by Garrett Lambrev
  12. Who Guided My Life? by Hattie Newell
  13. Remembrances by Janet Shular
  14. From Koolaid to Lemonade: Reflections on the Emperor Who Had No Clothes, by Andy Silver
  15. Four Years of Utopia, Then Prison! by Neva Sly
  16. To the Survivors of Peoples Temple by Tim Stoen
  17. Reflections on Leaving the Temple by Vera Washington
  18. 25 Years Hiding from a Dead Man by David Parker Wise
  19. The Trauma of Marriage to a Temple Survivor
  20. Larry Layton and Peoples Temple: Twenty-Five Years Later by Frank Bell
  21. The Anniversary Syndrome by Jeff Brailey
  22. Jonestown Tragedy Touches “Normal” Family by Roger Stacy