On December 12, 1978 – a little more than three weeks after the deaths in Jonestown – Peoples Temple released a listing of its members who were in Guyana on November 18, along with the next-of-kin information it had on hand. With 968 entries, it was more complete than any list prepared up to that point, although its cover statement acknowledged that much of the information on it was up to three years old and might be out of date. The names are in alphabetical order, although 17 names were appended to the end and are out of sequence.
There were just over 1000 members of the Temple in the region that day, including survivors in Jonestown, Port Kaituma, Georgetown in Guyana and elsewhere in the Caribbean.
A second, undated list gave more information about the members of the Jonestown community themselves, providing information on dates and places of birth, race, sex, and medical history, such as surgical scars or the names of their physicians in the United States. As its introduction stated, “we hope [this information] will help identify our loved ones still unidentified in Dover, Del.” As with the previous list, the first 951 names are in alphabetical order, and 16 names are added at the end.
The lists were prepared by longtime Temple member James R. Randolph, who was in the United States at the time of the tragedy, with assistance from dozens of other people, most notably Jonestown survivor Laura Johnston. They were not reproduced by the House committee charged with investigating the assassination of Rep. Leo Ryan – its list of the Jonestown dead identified only the deceased “where the next-of-kin or interested party has been notified” – and as a result, the official list was several hundred names short of being complete.
The two lists on this page also represented a point of departure for this site in its creation of the Who Died list.