Peoples Temple Collection; Box 7, Virtual item 8, Q048-Rep. Ryan address to Jonestown community (November 17, 1978)
- Digitized: 11/17/1978
- Peoples Temple (Organization)
In connection with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) investigation into the assassination of U.S. Congressman LEO J. RYAN at Port Kaituma, Guyana, South America, on November 18, 1978, a tape recording was obtained. This tape recording was located in Jonestown, Guyana, South America, and was turned over to U.S. Officials in Guyana and subsequently transported to the United States. On June 24, 1979, Special Agent (name deleted) reviewed the tape numbered 1B60-1. This tape was found to contain the following: A short speech by a male, identified on the tape as Congressman RYAN. He states he is leaving the next day. During the speech he states his visit was a congressional inquiry but everything was acceptable. There was applause on several occasions. In this fairly short tape, Rep. Leo Ryan addresses the Jonestown community on the evening of November 17, 1978. He notes that he is there in an official capacity, to answer questions about Jonestown which both the media and some relatives of Jonestown’s residents have raised. To thunderous applause, he remarks that "whatever the [questions and criticisms] are, there are some people here who believe this is the best thing that ever happened to them in their whole life." This is one of the few tapes known to have a separate and independent videotape documenting the same event. NBC taped the speech, and aired it numerous times in the weeks following the deaths of the congressman (and of the NBC cameraman who taped it, among others) at the Port Kaituma airstrip, and the deaths in Jonestown on November 18. Full summary of the recording available at Alternative Considerations of Jonestown website, along with the tape transcript.
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Physical Description Note
Original audio cassette tape recording digitized and made available as .mp3 audio file.
Publisher: The Jonestown Institute