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Editing the KehilaLinks Home Page Template

Using a Word Processor
A Brief Look at HTML
A Quick HTML Reference
A Guide to the Template's HTML
      · <HEAD> Section
      · <BODY> Section
      · Creating Maps with MapQuest
            · Special Characters
      · Pictures & Documents
      · Searchable Databases
            · JGFF (JewishGen Family Finder)
            · JewishGen "All Country" databases
            · U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
      · Other Information
      · Copyright Notices
      · Web Page Counters       · Site and Page Names

Using a Word Processor

You need to view the source code for the web page.

If you are using Word 2003:

Go to the View menu and select HTML Source. The Script Editor will open, showing you the html code of your entire Word document.

If you are using Word 2007 or 2010:

The internal link from Word to Script Editor in these versions. Instead, you will need to add a Web Page Preview button to the QAT (Quick Access Toolbar). To do so, click the dropdown arrow beside the QAT and select More Commands. The Word Options dialog will open. In the Choose Commands From box, select Commands Not in the Ribbon. Select Web Page Preview from the list of commands, and then click the Add button. When you use Web Page Preview, the document will open in your default web browser. You will then need to use your browser s method of viewing HTML code, rather than viewing it directly in Word. If you are using Internet Explorer or Firefox, click View on the toolbar, and then click Source. An additional window opens containing the html code of your Word document.

A Brief Look at HTML

After you have downloaded the KehilaLinks template file, open it in your text editor.  You will see that the file contains more text than you see on the browser's screen.  Much of this extra text appears within pairs of angle brackets (i.e.: "<" and ">").  This is HTML (HyperText Markup Language).

We will be using only a small part of HTML, and you will be guided through every step of the editing process, so don't worry.  For more information, here are some links to other web pages that describe how to write HTML.

The basic way HTML works is that you write the text you want to appear on a page, and then you "mark up" the text, to give instructions to a browser whenever you want the text to be displayed in a special way, or create a link between that part of the page and another page.  HTML instructions are always enclosed between angle brackets: "<>".  There must be a left and a right bracket for each instruction.  Most HTML instructions also have an "end" instruction, which shows the end of the affected text.  The "end" tag is preceded by a slash, e.g.: "</>".

For example, to format the sentence:

If I am not for myself, who will be for me?

so that the sixth word will show in BOLD print, we could write this bit of HTML:

If I am not for <b>myself</b>, who will be for me?

The result is:

If I am not for myself, who will be for me?

The HTML instruction "<b>" means "begin bold here".  All the text after that point will appear as bold, until the "end bold" instruction is given: "</b>".  If we move the "<b>" back one word, to before the word "for", then both words will appear as bold:

If I am not <b>for myself</b>, who will be for me?

The result is:

If I am not for myself, who will be for me?

A Quick Reference (the Most Common HTML Commands)

<b>text</b> Text: Bold — bold enclosed text
<i>text</i> Text: Italic — italicize enclosed text
<tt>text</tt> Text: Teletype — a monospace proportional font, like a typewriter
<u>text</u> Text: Underline — underline enclosed text
<ul> a list of items here </ul> List — defines a list
<li> item </li> List Item — one item in a list (enclosed within <ul> ... </ul>)
<p> ... </p> Paragraph — enclose a paragraph (surrounded by line breaks)
ALIGN=["left"|"right"|"center"|"justify"] Alignment — horizontal alignment on the page (i.e.: lined up with the left margin, lined up with the right margin, centered, or lined up with both margins)
<A HREF="http://linkedURL"></A> Anchor — link this text with a URL (another page on the web)
<h1>text</h1> Header — top-level header (large, bold)
<h2>text</h2> Header — second-level header (not as large as <h1>)
<h3> through <h6> Header — descending sizes of headers
<img SRC="filename or URL"> Image — designates placement of a graphic element

A Guide to the Template's HTML

Now let's step through the template web page's HTML, to see how to adapt it to your own use.  Every place that you will need to replace a word or a line, we will tell you in this document in red type.  In addition, embedded in the template file for the home page are comments that describe the function of each line.  Comments always begin with <!-- and end with -->.

Not every line of the template file will be listed here.  There may also be very slight differences between the formatting on this page and what you'll see in the template in your text editor.  Don't worry — We'll explain the important stuff, and anything that is not mentioned does not need editing.

<HEAD> Section

Beginning with the top of the template, find these lines:

   <TITLE>KehilaLinks Page -- YourTown</TITLE>

Here are the first three encapsulating formatting instructions that must appear once on each web page.  <HTML> and its partner </HTML> appear at the file's first and last lines, respectively.  This pair tells the browser that everything in between will be HTML instructions.  The next instruction, <HEAD> on line 2, is paired with the </HEAD> on line 4.  This defines the region at the top of the browser window.  Within the <HEAD> . . . </HEAD> pair is a <TITLE> . . . </TITLE>.  This shows two important aspects of HTML code:

  1. Commands can be upper or lower case.
  2. Commands can be "nested".  For example, "<A><B></B></A>" and "<B><C><A></A></C></B>" are permitted.  However, you must "end" the commands in reverse order, last to first, as in the examples above.

The text within the <TITLE> pair is the title of the web page.  The title of this web page is "Editing the KehilaLinks HomePage Template".  Look for this text at the top of the browser window or tab.

<TITLE>KehilaLinks Page -- YOURTOWN</TITLE>

Replace "YOURTOWN" with the name of your town.

<BODY> Section

<body link="ff0000" text="000000" vlink="0000ff">

The <BODY> of the HTML file describes most of the web page.  Here we define some simple "global" formatting rules for this page.  The values of each of these three formatting rules ("text", "link", and "vlink") are hexadecimal numbers describing colors.  With these instructions, we make the text black, the links red, and each link that has already been visited once ("vlink") will turn from red ("ff0000") to blue ("0000ff").  The different elements describing the formatting can be listed in any order.  You don't need to make any changes to this part.

<IMG src="/images/KehilaLinksLogo.jpg"></p>

This line describes the source of an image (IMG src) to be inserted here (the JewishGen KehilaLinks logo), and tells the browser to insert a new paragraph (<p>).  There are also some other lines describing the alignment and the size of the banner.  Don't change anything here.

The KehilaLinks Logo must appear on all pages and now there are two KehilaLinks Logos to select from:

  • The standard one with a white background should be referenced as /images/KehilaLinksLogo.jpg
  • The transparent logo should be referenced as /images/KehilaLinksLogo.transparent.png

<H1>KehilaLinks: <I>YOURTOWN</I></H1>

Here are two formatting elements we haven't seen before.  The <H1>...</H1> pair defines a headline.  H1 is the biggest font, H2, H3, H4, ... are smaller and smaller.  The <I>...</I> pair emphasizes text.  Once more we have a <p> (new paragraph marker), to give us some space.

Replace "YOURTOWN" with the name of your town.  This should be the modern name of the town, rather than the Yiddish name or previous names.

<H2>Other Names</H2>
    <LI><B>Alternate name 1 (Yiddish)</B></LI>
    <LI><B>Alternate name 2 (Another language, as appropriate)</B></LI>

This is our first section, called "Other Names".  The font for this section title (<H2>) is slightly smaller than the font for the page's main title (<H1>).  The <UL>...</UL> pair defines an unordered list (i.e.: one with bullets; there is no numbering).  The elements of this list, "Alternate name 1" and "Alternate name 2", are indicated within <LI>...</LI> pairs.

Replace "Alternate name 1 (Yiddish)" and "Alternate name 2" with the alternate name(s) of your town, in Yiddish and/or native languages.  Add as many additional lines as you need, one for each name, each preceded by <LI>.  If you don't need both lines, delete one.


This section describes a link to another web page, in this case a CGI program at a site called Mapquest.  In fact, this link has been used here to create a map of a part of Europe with a mark indicating the exact location of YOURTOWN, at 47°00´ N, 28°50´ E.  We use a CGI script on the JewishGen server to pass the latitude and longditude numbers to Mapquest.  Using this CGI method, if the syntax required by Mapquest should change, we can make a global change for all those KehilaLinks pages which use this link.

This is the URL (Uniform Resource Locator) address for the CGI script that creates a map using the coordinates you send it.


In order to create a map showing the location of your town, you will need to know its latitude and longitude.  You can use the JewishGen Gazetteer to find the coordinates if you don't already know them.  Once you have the coordinates, you will need to perform a simple calculation to get the right numbers to send to the mapping site.  We will use Kishinev's coordinates as the example.  They are 4700, 2850.

  1. Break the latitude into degrees and minutes: 4700 -> 47 + 00
  2. Divide the minutes by 60: 00/60 = 0
  3. Add the degrees and minutes together: 47 + 0 = 47
  4. Multiply the sum by 10,000: 47 * 10,000 = 470,000

Perform the same calculation for the longitude:

  1. Break the longitude into degrees and minutes: 2850 -> 28 + 50
  2. Divide the minutes by 60 (to 4 decimal places): 50/60 = .8333
  3. Add the degrees and minutes together: 28 + .8333= 28.8333
  4. Multiply the sum by 10,000: 28.8333* 10,000 = 288,333

So, for the latitude and longitude numbers, you will use 470000 and 288333, respectively in the places where you see "&lat=" and "&lng=".

Replace the latitude and longitude here, to specify the coordinates of your town, which you have figured out above.


So the full URL will be:

<A HREF="https:/">Mapquest</A>

Live Example: Mapquest

Special Characters:

One final comment about this item.  HTML has special codes to print out the degree and minute symbols used here: &deg; and &acute; (note that you must have both the ampersand preceding the code, and the semi-colon following in each case, with no spaces between any of the characters).  See also lists of the many other special HTML characters. Use these special characters carefully.  Some browsers may not display them properly, so your careful collection of Greek letters, umlauts, and cedillas may be seen as a series of "&#xxx" combinations.  Try to transliterate into Roman (Latin) characters whenever possible.

Other Maps:

If you want to include other maps, in addition to MapQuest:

    <LI><A HREF="">
Political Map of Moldava (1993)</A><LI>
    <LI><A HREF=""> Major Ethnic Groups in Moldava (1993)</A></LI>

These are interesting maps of Moldava.  The University of Texas has an on-line collection of other maps which may be helpful in describing your KehilaLinks project.  The CIA also has useful maps.  Another source of old European maps is the Federation of East European Family History Societies (FEEFHS).

Since so many borders have changed over the last two centuries, it might be a good idea to feature both antique and modern maps whenever possible.

Replace the links here with links to maps that describe your area of interest.  Each link should begin with <A HREF="http://etc.>, then a description of the link, and finally </A>.  If you don't have any maps to link to, delete the entire section from "<H2>Maps" to "</UL>".

Pictures, Background, Documents

    <LI><A HREF="">Photo of a Demonstration near the Freedom Monument(recent)</A></LI>

Sometimes a native of your KehilaLinks location will post photos of life there.  If you're lucky enough to find such a site, or to scan in your own photos, make them available here for all to see.  Before scanning photos, be sure to read the section here.

Fill in any appropriate links to photos.  If you don't have any links, just delete the entire section from "<H2>Pictures" all the way to "<UL>".

<H2>Background Information</H2>
    <LI><A HREF="history.html">History</A></LI>
    <LI><A HREF="bibliogr.html">Bibliography</A></LI>

It's always helpful to feature background and historical information about your KehilaLinks location.  If you're not supplying original material, or, if your original material isn't ready for posting, have links to other sites with relevant material.  The CIA website is again helpful for this section.  Add line items if needed.

Fill in any appropriate links here.  If you don't have any links, just delete the entire section from "<H2>Background Information" all the way to "<UL>".

    <LI><A HREF="pagetemp.htm">City Directory for 1921</A></LI>
    <LI><A HREF="bibliogr.html">Cemetery Listing from 1910</A></LI>

The URLs in the template are "dummy" URLs which serve as place holders for any sort of information you might want to include under this heading.

Replace "pagetemp.htm" with a real file name and "City Directory" and "Cemetery" with a real descriptions of documents that you will put on your site.  If you have additional documents, just add more line items.  If you don't have anything in this category, just delete the entire section between <H2> and </UL>.

<H2>Memoirs and Family Stories</H2>
    <LI><A HREF="pagetemp.htm">The Halpern Family's Journey to America</A></LI>
    <LI><A HREF="pagetemp.htm">Any Other Memoir</A></LI>

The URLs in the template are "dummy" URLs which serve as place holders for any sort of information you might want to include under this heading.

Replace "pagetemp.htm" with a real file name and "The Halpern Family" and "Any Other Memoir" with a real descriptions of documents that you will put on your site.  If you have additional documents, just add more line items.  If you don't have anything in this category, just delete the entire section between <H2> and </UL>.

Searchable Databases

In this section, you can create links to several searchable databases, which may contain data about your town: The JewishGen Family Finder (JGFF), the JewishGen "All Country" Databases, and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum's Archives.

JewishGen Family Finder (JGFF)

This "tailored" link searches the JewishGen Family Finder (JGFF), to locate information about other genealogists who are researching Jewish ancestors in your KehilaLinks location.  It is a rather complicated-looking paragraph, but basically what it does is send a query to the JGFF, giving the variables which the JGFF needs to return a list of matching researchers.

<H2>Searchable Databases</H2>


<B>JewishGen Family Finder</B> (for YOURTOWN)
<P>Would you like to connect with others researching YOURTOWN?
Click the button to search the JewishGen Family Finder database.

<INPUT TYPE="submit" VALUE="Search the JGFF">


Three important things to be very precise about:

  • Use https, NOT http. It isn't case sensitive, so use https as shown above
  • The name of the town field is NOT "Town", rather it is lowercase "town"
  • The name of the country field is NOT "Country", rather it is lowercase "country"
These details are important for the way browsers and the JGFF code work.

You will need to replace the word "YOURTOWN" with your town's name in the three places above.  One important note: you must use the current modern native name and spelling for your town.

You will need to replace the word "YOURCOUNTRY" with the country code for the country in which the town is currently located. The list of Country Codes is found here.

Check the JGFF before filling in this part, to make sure that your searches will be successful.

JewishGen "All Country" Databases

The template has additional database searches for the JewishGen "All Country" databases.  The comments in the template explain how to use the code, or click here for a full explanation.

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum - Archives

This "custom tailored" link searches the holdings of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum's research archives.  This link is the equivalent of typing "YOURTOWN" (or Alternate Name) in the Museum's search form.  Make sure to test whether there is any information available on your town before adding this link.

<A HREF="">United States Holocaust Memorial Museum archives on YOURTOWN</A>

If this database has information on your town, replace the word "YOURTOWN" with your town name and any alternate names preceded by "plus" signs.

Other Information

This is a "dummy" heading which serves as a place holder for any other sort of information you might want to include in your outline.

<H2>Additional Categories of Information</H2>
    <LI><A HREF="pagetemp.htm"><B>Line Item Description 1 Here</A></LI>
    <LI><A HREF="pagetemp.htm"><B>Line Item Description 2 Here</A></LI>

Fill in your real category name and replace "pagetemp.htm" with a real file name and "Line Item Description Here" with a real description of the URL.  If you don't have any additional categories, just delete the whole paragraph in the template.

<H2>Other YOURTOWN Links</H2>
    <LI><A HREF="http://sampleURL/"><B>Fill in the Name of a website or page here</A></LI>
    <LI><A HREF="http://sampleURL/"><B>Fill in the Name of another website or page here</A></LI>

This is a place to put any additional links to information about your town.  There are two "dummy" links in the template, which you can change or delete as needed.


Now's the chance to sign your work, and provide a means of communicating with you or your KehilaLinks group information about other resources, interested researchers with helpful material or relevant questions, or corrections or additions that could be made.

Compiled by <A HREF="">Your Name</A>.

Updated by YourInitials, March 19, 1999

Copyright &copy; 1998 Your Name

Replace the email address after the "mailto:" with your own email address, or with the email address of the person who will be handling all contacts for your site.  An alternative is to use the JewishGen “Blind Contact Form”.  Also make sure to fill in the date of last update.  Be sure to change the update date each time that you make changes to your page.

At the bottom of the page, we have a navigation bar to get back to the main KehilaLinks webpage.  You do not need to change this.


You may have seen counters at the bottom of web pages, which tell how many people have visited the page.  If you would like to add a counter to your site, please see the counters explanation and code.

Close and Save

And now we close the document, with the closing HTML tag "brackets" for two formatting tags found at the very beginning of the file, <html> and <body>.


Important: Save your document as "TEXT" or "ASCII".  If you save it in your native word processor format, it is likely that it will not be readable by a browser.  To test your document and see how it looks, open your browser, go to the "file" menu and pull down the option for opening a file (not a URL).  Your customized page should be viewable in your browser.  Certain graphics might not work if they are located on the JewishGen server (like the KehilaLinks logo and the "back arrow" at the bottom of the page).  Don't worry about this.

Site and Page Names

The URL for your new site will follow this format:


It is strongly recommended that you follow the KehilaLinks standard for naming of your Home page with either index.htm or default.htm This will make the site name end with the town name.

Subsequent/linked pages of your site can be named as appropriate by the content of the page.

Do not place spaces in your page names. Instead, use an underscore. Spaces are interpreted by the internet as %20 making it more difficult to read the URL.

Congratulations and Mazel Tov!

You've just created your first Web page.

Back to KehilaLinks Documentation Main Page
Last Update: Sep 3 2017   BAE
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