Citing a webpage with "posted" downloadable PDF files

Dear editor;

In my project of revising my pre-existing citations, I've come across yet another instance that needs special attention. It is a webpage with a files section, in which the webmaster has "posted" files for download with her name, a date and a time.  

It is almost as if the webmaster was intending to post other files and revisions. This looks like "blog-like" way of making the files available for download. So, I thought that I could try using something that employs QuickCheck Model for "BROADCASTS & WEB MISCELLANEA BLOGS, (Source List Entry covering a single posting)," EE p.787.

If such is the case, then I suspect that the following citation would work. But; perhaps you have a better suggestion?

Source List Entry

Lancaster, Judy. “merivale united cemeteries map.pdf, v.1.” Merivale United Church. Merivale United Church Cemetery. 16 February 2014, 11:03 AM. : 2021.

First (Full) Reference Note

Judy Lancaster (webmaster), “merivale united cemeteries map.pdf, v.1,” Merivale United Church, Merivale United Church Cemetery, 16 February 2014, 11:03 AM ( : accessed 19 July 2021), downloadable files section.

Subsequent (Short) Notes

Lancaster, “merivale united cemeteries map.pdf, v.1,” downloadable files section.

Submitted byEEon Mon, 07/19/2021 - 16:39

History-Hunter, EE would not treat this as a blog, because it is not a blog. Merivale United Methodist Church has created a website at Google Sites, where the church posts all sorts of things—articles, maps, current news, etc.  That’s no different from creating a site at Wix or GoDaddy or any other host. Website creators can then use the (usually free) domain of the host for their URL (which carries the name of the host in the URL) or they purchase their own domain that will not have the name of the host in the URL. Many websites created by researchers offer PDF downloads of various research papers, maps, or other historical materials.  My own website Historic Pathways is set up that way.

The home page for the church’s website is at  Each page thereunder would be cited with the basic format used for articles/databases/etc. at a website. (See EE QuickStart Guide for “Website with Multiple Offerings." It is also explained in more detail at 2.32 “Basic Elements to Cite.”)

You have proposed this for the First Reference Note:

Judy Lancaster (webmaster), “merivale united cemeteries map.pdf, v.1,” Merivale United Church, Merivale United Church Cemetery, 16 February 2014, 11:03 AM ( : accessed 19 July 2021), downloadable files section.

However, when I click that link, it takes me to a web page that is titled “Merivale United Church Cemetery.”  One of the items on that webpage is a link to “merivale united cemeteries map” in pdf format.  EE would approach the citation this way:

Merivale United Methodist Church, “Merivale United Church Cemetery,” article, Fallowfield United Church and Merivale United Church ( : accessed 19 July 2021) > merivale united cemeteries map.pdf.

In short:

Creator/author, “Title of Web Page,” type of page, Title of Website (URL= place of publication : date) > specific item or link.

We do not cite web masters unless they are specifically identified as the author of the content.  As a corollary, when citing a book, we cite the author but we do not cite the typist, typesetter, graphic artist, or printing house that contracted to do the printing for the publisher.  EE discusses this point at various places, including:

  • 2.32 (Basic Elements to Cite) “Rule 1 … we cite author/creator/owner of the website’s content.”

  • 11.5 “Identifying the Author of Creator … In all cases, the phrase website creator refers to the creator of the content … not the graphic designer who might be credited at the site.”

Submitted byHistory-Hunteron Wed, 07/21/2021 - 15:05

Thank you for the clarification. When I saw the webmaster post the map with posting date and time, it made me think of blog posts. I'll revise my citation as suggested.

Submitted byHistory-Hunteron Wed, 07/21/2021 - 15:46

Please note that the path suggested does not work, solely due to a programming error in the main webpage link. This is why I had used the other web address in my original post. I've notified the webmaster of the error and made a minor change in the citation to define a path that bypasses the erroneous link.

The change is still in line with your suggestion. Your idea of starting from the main page seems more elegant. Thank you for your reply and suggestions.

For the benefit of anyone trying to follow the posts at a future date, here is the modified citation with the addition bolded. (note that the trailing "/" in the URL could be removed, if desired.)

Merivale United Methodist Church, “Merivale United Church Cemetery,” article, Fallowfield United Church and Merivale United Church ( : accessed 19 July 2021) > Merivale Cemeteries > merivale united cemeteries map.pdf.