Help:Getting started

This help page introduces users to basic MediaWiki markup and Folgerpedia-specific guidelines. For information on formatting articles and adhering to structural policies for Folgerpedia, please read the Manual of Style. For a brief overview of Folgerpedia, please read the Folgerpedia article.

Creating your account

To create an account, please email for permissions.

Creating an article

  • Before getting started writing your article, please read our Manual of Style.
    • Types of articles include lists, annotated bibliographies, character and play descriptions, as well as descriptions of individual items in the collection.
      • For lists, title should read “List of…”
      • For annotated bibliographies, title should read “Annotated bibliography of…”
      • For individual collection items, be sure to include the century or date of the item, as well as a concise description. Be sure to create a redirect with the call number for the article as well.
  • To create an article, enter the exact desired descriptive title into the search bar and click the search icon.
    • Be sure your title is in sentence case—only the first word in the title should be capitalized unless it is a proper noun.

n.b. in order to check whether an article on your chosen topic already exists, select the middle “Gear wheel” drop down, select “Special pages” and then navigate to “All pages” for a list of all articles. If your article does not exist, the title will appear in red underneath the search bar. To create the article, click the red title link and you will be taken to an empty editing space.

Creating content and editing

Once you have navigated to the new editing space, you have the option of editing in one of two modes. Please be sure to read the editing warnings at the bottom of the article before saving.


To edit in VisualEditor, select the paper icon drop down and click “Edit.” The page should be a tan background and a toolbar will appear along the top. This editing method displays the page as it will look as a finished product. For editing tips, see the VisualEditor help page. n.b. VisualEditor is currently not supported on Internet Explorer. Developers hope to eventually support VisualEditor on Internet Explorer 9 and higher in the future.

MediaWiki editor

To edit in the MediaWiki editor, select the paper icon drop down and click “Edit source.” This is the HTML editor. To view what the finished product will look like without saving, select “Show preview” at the bottom of the page. For editing tips, see the MediaWiki help page.

MediaWiki links for editing basics

Getting started

  • Select your account profile drop down. Choose “Preferences.” Under “User profile,” change your password and then further down the page confirm your email. You will receive a confirmation email in your inbox. Follow the link in the email and your email address will be confirmed.
  • While still in “Preferences,” navigate to the “Editing” header. Check the box labeled “Enable enhanced editing toolbar.” This toolbar will make editing in the “Edit source” mode (MediaWiki markup) much easier. The other option is to edit in “Edit” mode (VisualEditor) which appears the same as the finished article.

MediaWiki markup—quick tips

  • Article titles should appear in sentence case only, unless there are proper nouns in the title. Types of articles include: List of…, Annotated bibliography of…, …at the Folger, etc. To view a full list of article titles, navigate to the “Gear wheel” icon→Special pages→Lists of pages→All pages. To create a new article, enter the exact descriptive title into the search bar and select the search icon. A new link displayed in red will appear on the next page. Click the link to create the new article.
  • Headings: The presence of 4 headings or more (levels 2-5) automatically creates a table of contents. Level 1 headings are reserved for titles of articles only. Please leave one line of space underneath each heading. Markup example: === Level 3 === or <h2>
  • Bulleted lists: Use an asterisk to render a bullet point. To indent the next bullet point, add another asterisk.

Example: *Point 1

**Point 1 clarification.

  • Numbered lists: To create a numbered list, simply place a “#” before each entry.
  • Text: Bold lettering is rendered by placing three individual apostrophes around the desired text. Example: ‘’’Bold lettering’’’ In a similar vein, italics are rendered by placing two individual apostrophes around the desired text. Example: ‘’italic text’’
  • Links: To link to an external webpage, the markup should look like this:[ Folger website]—the text on the right will render as a blue link in the article without displaying the URL. To link to another Folgerpedia article, the markup should look like this [[Playbill collection]] (this can also be used to create a new article by placing a new title within double brackets). To refer to an article by a different title follow this example: [[Playbill collection | Playbills at the Folger]] = [[Original article title | Display title]]. To link to an article from a different wiki within the Folger structure, simply attach the prefix of the wiki to the markup like this: [[:folgerpedia:Playbill_collection|Playbill collection]].
  • Upload an image: Select the “Gear wheel” icon. Click on “Upload file.” Choose your file and put the photo credit in the “Summary” box. The wiki markup for an image looks like this:[[File:___]]. The easiest way to use the correct file name is to copy and paste the new file name from the top of the page after the file is uploaded.
  • Upload a video: Folgerpedia uses the Html5mediator extension to embed mp4 videos in the articles of your choice. Simply copy and paste the following code <html5media height="180" width="320">File:Example.mp4</html5media>. Please use this size video screen to keep the page from becoming too heavy.
  • Upload audio: Uploading audio uses the same principles as video upload, except the player does not require height and width distinctions.
  • Before saving, describe your changes in the summary box at the bottom of the editing page. Select “Show preview” in order to view your article before it is published in order to catch any possible mistakes in your text or markup. After reviewing your article, save it.
  • To undo unwanted saved changes, navigate to the “Paper” dropdown at the top right hand corner and select “History.” You will then be able to revert to the previous version of the article by choosing the version you want from the list of changes (this is why it is a good idea to label your changes in the summary at the bottom of the edit page).


You can make the contents of one page show up on another, such that updating the page in the first place will automatically show the updated content wherever it's transcluded. To transclude a page, enclose its name in double curly brackets:


The colon is necessary if you're transcluding a page in "mainspace"--that is, one without a prefix, like Folgerpedia: or Help:. For those, the full page name works fine:


To make only portions of one page show up on another, see the MediaWiki instructions for partial transclusion.

To transclude a template, only the template name is necessary. The system assumes what you're trying to transclude is a template, unless you specify another prefix or use the colon:


Minor edits

Fixing typographical errors, broken links, adding links, or making small updates to layout are some examples of what constitutes a minor edit. Any substantive edit should be summarized in the "Summary" box at the bottom of the MediaWiki editor page or in the pop-up dialogue box in VisualEditor. If you are unsure of the magnitude of your edit, err on the side of summary.


In order to organize our growing list of articles in Folgerpedia, adding categories is an important final step when you create or edit an article. The best way to ensure your categories fit within our hierarchy, or tree, navigate to the "Gear wheel" dropdown, select "Special pages," and then under the heading "Lists of pages," select "Categories." Once you have established your category does not exist, but fits into the tree, select the existing category that is one level broader than yours. You will be taken to the editing page for the category. There you will enter your new category which looks like this: [[Category:Example]]. Also feel free to browse the editing views of other articles to see the ways other users apply categories. To link to a category without it automatically appearing at the bottom of an article, but instead displays as an intrawiki link, simply place a colon before the word "Category" in the markup and then add the display text after the link, like so: [[:Category:Example|Example category]].

Editing reminders

  • Please note that all contributions to Folgerpedia may be edited, altered, or removed by other contributors. If you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly, then do not submit it here.
  • You are also promising us that you wrote this yourself, or copied it from a public domain or similar free resource.
  • Your content is subject to Folger licensing--Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International.
  • Do not submit copyrighted work without permission!