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Finding Aid to the Photographs from Peoples Temple records, 1959-1982 (bulk 1972-1978), MSP 3800
MSP 3800  
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Consists of photographic prints of various sizes pertaining to Peoples Temple, including individual and group portraits, publicity photographs, and snapshots. Includes images of church services, recreational outings, and Peoples Temple members working at various pursuits, including farming, cooking, and woodworking. Includes interior and exterior shots of Peoples Temple churches in the United States, images of Peoples Temple members in Jonestown and Georgetown, Guyana, and approximately 6500 identification photographs of 3800 Peoples Temple members and others who attended church services in California. Also includes negatives and two slides. Unidentified Peoples Temple members took the bulk of the photographs before the deaths in Jonestown, Guyana, in November 1978.
Peoples Temple began as a church founded by Jim and Marceline Jones and a small group of parishioners in Indianapolis in 1955. As pastor, Jim Jones preached to a racially-integrated congregation during Pentecostal-based services that included healings and sermons on integration and class conflicts. Peoples Temple conducted food drives; opened a "free restaurant" that served thousands of meals to the city's poor in the early 1960s; operated nursing homes; and hosted weekly television and radio programs featuring their integrated choir. The church became well known in the Indianapolis press for the members' integration activities and for their assertions of their pastor's gifts as a healer. The church became affiliated with the Disciples of Christ denomination in 1960.
7 boxes, 25 albums (10.5 linear feet)
Passport photographs, membership photographs, and other individual portraits of former members who are still living require the written permission of that person to be reproduced or published. The researcher must locate the individual and present CHS with proof of permission, either by email or letter.
All researchers must sign the Access Agreement form, confirming that they have read and understood the restrictions outlined in the document Restricted Materials in the Peoples Temple Records, MS 3800. This document, and the Access Agreement form, are available at the reference desk or can be sent electronically.