SuperHaunt Bucket List Location #9: Mindfu** to Death: Jonestown

On November 18, 1978, over 900 peace loving followers of the The People’s Temple communion and agricultural group were found dead after drinking cyanide and valium laced Flavor Aid…all because they were told they should.  304 of these were children. How could this be?  Mind control.  But who is strong enough to control over 900 minds, and even government officials to look the other way at times?  Jim Jones.


The life of a cult leader:  Who is this Jim Jones?

James Warren Jones, born in Crete, Indiana on May 13, 1931, appeared to be just a normal kid early on.  His home life was a bit dysfunctional, but no more than the average that you hear about nowadays. His father didn’t have much interest in him, and his mother left him alone much of the time so she could work.  Nothing oddly out of place there… he DID attend church regularly, and became slightly obsessed with preaching early on though.  By age 10 he showed no interest in sports, as expected of a boy in that time period.  Instead, he would preach to his friends, preach to other families, preach to whomever would listen.  It appeared that he was just on a life path to become a minister, and although some were turned off by his tenacity and the level of which he preached, it appeared to be his calling.  Think of him as a mini televangelist. Later on of course, he entered the ministry and followed through with his goals.  

He eventually started his own church in 1955, and in 1960 moved it to California.  

In 1965, Jones declares himself God’s only true prophet, and that the bible is false.  High profile slick sermons continued on, and people were taken for all of their money, regularly.


In 1973, He decides it’s time to inform his followers that he has been chosen to be God.  They buy it.

 In 1974 he purchased land in Guyana and began to build a compound with his followers.  This was a dream come true for Jones, as he always hoped to have a communist based compound. 


His paranoia rose as his health declined.  By this time he was highly addicted to amphetamines and opiates both.  Loudspeaker sermons over his prison camp compound were daily while suicide drills in the middle of the night (mock mass suicides) were a very regular occurrence for the ‘congregation’.



To watch a mini biography on Jim Jones, produced by the Bio Channel, click here:   (you may need to reload the page once there)

Concerned family members back in the United States began to complain and even sue for the return of children.  Stories leaked out of people held against their will.  And the paranoia Jones experienced continued to rise, as his major health complaint would be the stints of insomnia he would experience for sometimes 3-4 days straight.  Armed guards surrounded the perimeter… all part of Jones’s militia.  Things were now out of control.  

Finally Senator Leo J Ryan visited Jonestown in an attempt to confront Jones on the allegations of members being held against their will.  He was asked to leave by Jones himself, but he attempted to take followers that wanted to leave as well.  A shootout on the runway ensued and the Senator was killed.  

Now there was no hope, and Jones gave the order for “Revolutionary Suicide”.




Cyanide and Valium laced ‘flavor aid’ was prepared and delivered to the congregation, children and babies first, by means of syringe.  It took each person a full 5 minutes to die.   There were only 33 survivors of Jonestown, and that was by their bravery alone as they hid in the jungle, knowing that death would surely ensue if they were found.

Now from a paranormal standpoint, I am interested to know how many of those 900 people still reside there, as earthbound spirits.  Each has their own story… each died a horribly sick and painful death, and for each and every person that was poisoned, I’m sure that last 5 minutes seemed to last forever.  Jonestown made my bucket list for the simple fact that communication of the deceased should technically be amplified there.  I’m an empath, so of course the symptoms will manifest in me, but it’s worth it to hear and know them, and their stories.  For a list of all the victims, click here:


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