JONES, James Warren (Rev.)

Photos Courtesy of California Historical Society, MSP 3800

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Last Name
Given Names
James Warren (Rev.)
Better known as
Date of Birth
Age at Death
Place of Birth
Crete, Indiana
Family Tree
  Lynetta Jones Family Tree
Birth Mother
Lynetta Jones
Birth Father
James Thurman Jones
Marceline Mae Baldwin Jones
Stephanie Jones (adopted) (died in 1959); Suzanne Jones (adopted); Agnes Pauline Jones (adopted); Stephan Gandhi Jones; James Warren (Jimmie) Jones, Jr. (adopted); Lew Eric Jones (adopted); Timothy Glenn Tupper (Day) Jones (adopted); John Moss Brown Jones (adopted); Jim Jon (Kimo) Prokes; (?) John Victor Stoen; (grandchildren) William Dillon Dean Jones; James Arthur (Jimbo) Bishop Jones; Stephanie Jones aka Stephanie Lynn Bishop; Michael Ray Jones; Stephanie Brown aka Stefanie Jamelle Morgan; Chaeoke Warren Jones; Monyelle Maylene Jones; Marchelle Jacole Jones
Non-Temple Relatives
Body Identification Number
Burial Location
Cremated; cremains scattered at sea
Source of Death Information
House Foreign Affairs Committee report; FBI document 89-4286-1302 (prepared 12/78)
Entry into Guyana
Residence (US)
Redwood Valley, California 95470
Residence (JT)
East House
Occupation in U.S./Skills, Talents & Interests
clergy (RYMUR 89-4286-X-5-a-26dd)
Occupation in Jonestown (Temple Records)
Executive Officer (Jonestown photo, 7/12/1978)
Jonestown Roles (FBI Records)
Government Income
“You could of been a good man if you chosen the right path. I beleive God gave you the gift of being a pastor. But you used that gift in the wrong way. But I also belive deep down inside my heart you where trying to do good by helping people in need. But somewhere something went terribly wrong. ” - Donna

“I never knew Jim Jones or was even alive when he was a preacher, but I do know one thing for sure with all of the academic literature that is written by John Hall and Lorne Dawson, and essentially I wanted to say is that Jones of the most misunderstood individuals in history.... I think that you did love but you were too scared to be rejected so you had everybody take their lives so that you always have your followers. ” - Anonymous

“You were a very miss understood man. Deep down inside you in the very begining of your calling I believe you were a very good man. I also belive God gave you a gift, but you used it in the most unexplinable way possible. A ripe apple gone way bad. I remember seeing one of your services about 40 years ago and enjoyed it. But it saved my life for not going back. ” - alexandra

“it makes me cry whenever I think about this ” - Toby

“You held in your grasp the lives and welfare of so many and forgot how precious they were. God forgive you and save your soul, Brother. ” - Susan

“Jim, I am but fourteen but I heard about you on the History Channel and In my social studies classes all the time and I thought that you had the gift of preaching the gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But instead you turned that into the gospel of "apostolic socialism." But deep down inside my heart I forgive you for what you done. dustyn, Adams-Plank Enterprise Baptist ” - Dustyn

“Jim, you had a lot of people fooled and you certainly should have been stopped and removed from power long before that final day. You took a dream and destroyed it along with the lives of a thousand and thousands of others who loved them. May G-d have mercy on your soul. ” - Anonymous


“You were a very mis understood individual. But I do think that you could've been a wonderful evangelist like Billy Graham. But then things went terribly wrong. But I do fogive you for what you done. ” - Anonymous

“ I simply cannot believe that 30 years have gone by since that horrible day. You started out such a good guy but something went tragically wrong. Unlike some of the posts here, I cannot forgive you as I think of all the children who died. I'm very glad that your sons Stephan and James are living their lives in a good way ” - Frank

“May the Lord have mercy on you, you misguided soul. ” - Anonymous

“A cautionary tale of how the non-participating "members" of society can be led to the false vision of socialist utopia by a supposedly charismatic figure. Thirty years later, Americans have learned NOTHING. ” - Mike

“i wish i knew what was going on in your mind when you led all those people to their deaths. and then not even having the courage to pull the trigger on yourself, or take the cyanide that the others did. you were a great leader, with great ambition, but a tragic end ” - Anonymous

“You could have done SO much good and yet you choose another path. I can forgive you even if others can't. I am hopeful that your surviving family can also forgive you as well for they are the ones that seek to understand,to heal. God forgive you for all of your sins...if only you had choosen the right path..I mourn for all the lost souls and the good works that you could have all done. Why? Dear God Why Jim? ” - Anastasia

“I am 63 years old and grew up with the Cordell family(Carol Ann Cordell McCoy) I attended the Peoples Temple in Indianapolis with them on numorous occasions as a child. Jim Jones was evil then (over 50 years ago)I was scared of him and stopped going. Told my mother a few things and she said "NO MORE" Jim Jones I hope you are burning at this moment. ” - Judy Doss McCreary

“I'm from the Netherlands and never heard of Jonestown till last week. I guess I'll never understand how one man could get over 900 people to commit suicide. It's so sad to see all those pictures of kids, even babies. Hope they went to their promised land. ” - Wilma

“To me the only conclusion that I came up with about Jim is that he was misleading, simple-minded, egotistic, manic depressive, dope pushing troll of a man who thought of himself so small and yet he wanted everybody to know that he were bigger than life itself. Even bigger than God. I believe in one point that he heard a voice from God to preach the gospel. But gotten jealous because when he prayed or helped people in need they were giving God the glory and not Jim. Not realizing it was God working through him. And Because of that he became twisted and evil. May God have mercy on your soul Jim. ” - juan

“I was 3 years old when this tragedy occurred & had no connection with it, so I discovered all of its details recently as an adult. All I can say is: I don't agree that something went tragically wrong with Jim Jones as an adult, I think the signs were there as a child from what I studied. For instance, statistics show most serial killers & sociopaths torture God's innocent creatures (animals) as children & Jones was known to do just that, besides other examples, the signs were there. This is a perfect lesson of how humans can become indoctrinated/enamored by false prophets/religious fanatics, to the point of even rendering God's most precious gifts - life & loved ones. When man chooses to put fellow man above God, there is always retribution & the principle silver lining in this cloud is the lesson it has taught millions in the aftermath. This is not to downplay this massacre in any way whatsoever because no human being deserved this. I still ponder if Jones & this ministry had a governmental conspiratorial background & if this was premeditated for an alternate purpose not exposed to the public. I, personally, don't see how one could forgive Jones & would prefer to cast this to God where his karma will be worked out either via hell or a deplorable reincarnation. ” - Anonymous

“I never met Jim Jones. However, my first boyfriend, who was older than me, knew Jim Jones. I've spent hours reading what former members have posted on this website. People talk about the way Jones had of making people feel special and noticed. What my ex-boyfriend told me in the late 'seventies backs that up. My boyfriend was a gospel singer - not one who made much money in it because he wasn't a person who was especially interested in money. Among other things,he told me that Jim Jones would send someone to the airport to greet him, drive him where he needed to go, and make sure his needs were seen to. For an amateur singer visiting from another city, this would definitely make an impression. My ex said he backed away after one of the guys who drove him around referred to Jim Jones as God. That, plus he'd seen supposed faith healings where a tumor was pulled from someone's body. However, he was pretty sure it was an animal's innards. Evidently, there are quite a number of Pentecostal styled faith healers who have used this trick over the years. Who knows, though? If my ex hadn't lived in another city in a different part of the country, and if he'd met Jim Jones at the wrong time, maybe he'd have winded up at Jonestown, too. I believe he would have been very vulnerable to Jim Jones' appeal under certain circumstances. ” - Anonymous

“I first heard about the Jonestown tragedy when I was just a little girl, & I'd read about it in a book...Now, 31 years later, I've learned a lot more about Jonestown, Peoples Temple, & you...After reading & hearing so many different things about you, I have come to the conclusion that I really, truly believe you were a good person at first. You truly seemed to care about people, about social justice, & about making the world a better place to live in. You had such great goals, ideals, & ambitions, & you had a great way to achieve social equality through Peoples Temple. You & your wife were the first people in Indiana to adopt a black child, & you showed so much kindness to your family, friends, & followers. You did all those great things in your life...but, unfortunately, for reasons that are a complete mystery to me, you became a very evil person over time, & the goodness in you gradually disappeared. You became twisted, warped, into something totally different from what you used to be. You became paranoid & delusional from your addiction to drugs, which did not help with your personal decline. And, finally, you made the ultimate decision to have 909 people end their lives on November 18, 1978. The suicide / murders are tragic in themselves, but I find it even more sad that none of that would have happened if you hadn't lost the goodness inside of you. I do not approve of the monster you became, or the bad things you did in your last few years of life...& although I can't help but feel angry at you sometimes, I also feel very sorry for you. I wish you did not have to become an evil person, & I wish you could have remained good for the rest of your life...And the more I think about it, the more I get the urge to cry. Angels & demons certainly wrestled within you, Jim Jones...Sometimes, I wonder if God ever split you in two, so that the evil part of you would go to hell, while the good part of you remained untainted, unblemished, & uncorrupted in heaven. You were truly one of the most complex & tragic figures of our time--a righteous man who gradually went down the wrong path, & took other people with him. I don't know whether to forgive you or not for bringing about the mass suicide / murders; all I know is that this tragedy could have been avoided, & your life would have had no problems if you had not become a bad person. Someone else summed it up better than I could: You were a good apple gone very, very bad, & I only wish I could understand why it had to be that way. ” - Anastasia Ashworth

“I don't where it all went wrong. I was only 5 when this all happened, but I have read so much about Jonestown. I, myself, do not much believe that Jones was a good man, at any time. Childhood friends say that he has, on at least one occasion, killed an animal just to give a funeral. This was him as a child!! Even during the earlier stages (before Guyana), he was having members "disciplined" in church for the littlest infractions. We are talking about having children getting lashes with a wooden board (as well as adults) and even had members beat on each other. This was a good man?! Please! Jim Jones was a demented individual for which I have no pity! Only his unfortunate flock do I feel sorry for. Many of them were forced to drink the poison - not everyone wanted to follow this madman into hell. R.I.P members of the Peoples Temple. ” - Bella

“I recently met a survivor of this holocaust. Explained a lot about him. I recalled this event from when I was 19 years old, and I've never believed in anything or anyone who professed to "know God's will" for anyone other than themselves. Bless those who died and those who survived them. ” - Joyce Baker

“My first knowledge of Jim Jones and the Peoples Temple was when news coverage of the horrible events in 1978 hit the airwaves. Although most of what I read lays the blame of these tragic events upon Jim Jones and his inner circle, I think it's important to note that all of the adults in Jonestown bear some responsibility. Although I can understand the helplessness of the children and elderly, the other adults do bear responsibility for their own actions. They placed too much trust into one man's hands, even though mountains of evidence show he was extremely mentally unstable, even before leaving California. Although Socialism seems like a beautiful dream to those of us who desire a world of justice and equality, it has a terrible needs leaders. History has proven time and again that most of these leaders turn corrupt due to the influence and authority they are given BY THE POPULOUS. Jonestown should serve as a warning to all in society, that no man or his inner circle, deserve or can handle absolute power. In the man is God. ” - T.R. Stanford

“I will always love the Jim Jones for what he was and not what he became. I know that it is hard for most to understand and it may be difficult for most to accept, but loving and accepting the beliefs and values of Jim Jones was easy and will always remain easy for me. ” - Anonymous

“You could have been many things, but you turned out to be a nightmare for so many, and so many families that still live with this every day. I think if your mental illnesses had been treated properly, you would have taken a completely different road and would have helped many. It is really hard for me to say anything good, but I do believe there is good in everyone, no matter how little. Maybe you had good intentions in the beginning, but in the end it was all wasted because someone didn't speak up and get you the help you needed so desperately. ” - Anonymous

“I remember the breaking news the day it was told to the rest of the world what had happened. I was only five and understanding what happen was beyong my ability. Today helping other that have been abused, neglected and abandoned as children I needed to do my research and study other accounts before I was confident. I myself was brough up in an abusive household and yes neglected by my mother. It brought may hard years having to move on and help myself to put an experience turning it positive were I help many see themselves worth more than they thought they were molded to be. Your mother may not ave been the most impressionable person for he time but you must see that she worked very hard to keep the family afloat. She only knew what she knew and had not much of a choice to be away working long hours to be there for you. She probably knew his because reading of your childhood there were the moments she was the mother bear protecting her cub. The times were troubling leaving many in a terriable situation. I know you felt the anxiety of separation from her and needed her so much. The lady neighbor lady that did care for you deserves recognition for doing so; without her something could have happened, God Bless her. I feel for you because there was no understanding in that time period and child abuse was unheared of and pushed aside until people became angry enough to do something about it. The lack education about the effects on a child from any form of maltreament was not concidered an issue and it hurts me to see how many lived through that. You had a very good heart and reached out to help and stop mistreament in the pre civil right and civil rights era showing you standing up for what is right. Many where too afraid to do that and you knew that. The Peoples Temple was a very good thing but your childhood lead you to demanding everyone to say with you. You were afraid to be alone again; something I can understand. In the end your mental health was out of control because in the 1970's Psychology was in its infancy. I still feel it has not matured much because the brain is very hard to understand. What happened hurt the whole world and destoyed the family and friends lives for what your follows had to do for you on Novemeber 18,1978. I wish sometimes that I could travel back in time a rescue that handsom little guy you were. Also Sunday was your birthday and wanted you to know that I was thinking about you. Yes, you had been a frightening man that I really would be threatened to be with, however, you were not like that years before that. Some people may have seen characteristics of what you left us with but being a boy and in the youthful years I saw mischeif and a prank player and there was noting wrong with that only that sometimes it did go over board. I can't say that I was any better. It was only done to get a reaction and some form of attention even if it was positive or negative. I cant say that I can or can't forgive you for what has happened but do thank you for letting your son's survive. I know you had the ability to order them out while they were in Georgetown. That so much shows a little light that you were still human. That is my opinion until further evidence proves other. I don't know what God has for you but I am sure he saw what has affected you to end many lives as your own. Tis world is evil and it can come out and claim anyone without us knowing it. Rest In Peace, I hope and if we do more on to whatever we do and that includes reliving another life please don't end it with an Epic Fail! This may sound crazy to many but with lots of love I am glad I had this time to speak to you in spirit or where ever you are or to who ever reads this. Tis event was a great horror but there were many who are or have been worst and some I can say I am glad they no longer roam this Earth. There could have been hope for you before the 70's. ” - Adele K

“I pity you Jim. I pity you because you fell victim to your own tragic self-fulfilling prophesy. I pity you because I see what was so much potential squandered. You surrounded yourself with some of the smartest and most beautiful women and men on Earth and yet you had not the courage to be loyal in return to those that gave all to you. I pity you because you had no real love for anyone including yourself. I pity you for often times being a very ridiculous man controlling people with trickery and gross displays of intimidation. I pity you for being a man full of only superficial love. I believe in the end you truly grieved for no life but your own. I pity you for being so full of fear. I pity you for being a drug addict and having all of the misery associated with that. I pity you for being a malignant narcissist and not getting the help you needed. I pity you for being so deceived by yourself. This world is often lonely, but when we begin to lie to ourselves it becomes even lonelier. I forgive you because I must. That is what makes me feel good... To honestly say I have no hate. You were tricked into believing hate was your ally. No matter how much I pity you, I pity your victims both dead and alive even more. You wanted to be forever remembered in history as a great revolutionary messiah... and I pity you because you became a joke to history instead. You were so very clever in your manipulations but in the end the joke was on you. I feel nothing but pity for you, Jones. THOSE WHO DO NOT REMEMBER THE PAST ARE CONDEMNED TO REPEAT IT ” - Sharon Beeman

“I'm doing a school project on this and I can't help but think this man could've gone down in history a completely different way. He belived what he was doing was good. It's our point of view that makes it wrong. I'm not saying these people should've died. I'm saying his intentions were good, but he could have done so many things with the church. Also he didn't kill them, they took their own lives. They knew what the Kool-Aid had in it. They practiced White Night suicide drills. He's not a murderer, he is an influence.” - Anonymous

“I recently met a survivor of this Holocaust. I recalled this event from when I was 19 years old, and I've never believed in anything or anyone who professed to "know God's will" for anyone other than themselves. Bless those who died and those who survived them.” - Joyce Baker

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. Until this lesson is learned... History really is doomed to repeat itself. ” - Anonymous

Reflections on Jim Jones – 2019” - Amy Brown

“I didn't exist when you led 900+ people to their death but I felt present among the doomed crowd of people whenever I hear the screams and wails of children on the chilling death tape. I hope people learn from your biggest mistake...."Never ever play God".” - Anonymous

Like Father, Like Son” - Stephan Jones

The Healings of Jim Jones” - Don Beck

The Man They Loved” - Stephan Jones

An Open Letter to Jim Jones” - Erin Clymer

Change and the Chameleon That Was Jim Jones” - Laura Johnston Kohl

Marceline/Mom” - Stephan Jones

“I wasn't born until 1981. However, if I was around during that time. I have no doubt in my mind I would have been a part of your church. No doubt at all. I see a lot of what everyone else had seen in you and your congregation. It's sad that it gradually changed into what it did. Its strange to me that even in death you still have a very strong effect on people. All these years later, people of my generation are drawn to you. Myself included. If your plan was to go down in history, you definitely made it happen. But, you will only be remembered for the ending you chose for everyone. I am a strong believer in forgiveness, therefore I do forgive you. I wish it was different for each and every person that lost their life. We can't change any of it, but we DID learn from it. Rest in Peace!” - Dianna Jones