Photographs found Online

I found some photographs of the church where my great-grandfather was baptized. The photographer has generously made them available through a Creative Commons license.

I'm struggling to write a citation that covers both photographs and webpages.

Here's what I have so far:

Dixon, David. "Emmanuel Church, The Parish Church of Newton-in-Makerfield." Geograph ( : accessed 20 September 2019).


Does it matter if the picture is from a database of images? Would this citation work for a picture found on a webpage as opposed to a database of images?



Submitted byEEon Sun, 09/22/2019 - 14:33

Jennifer, let me ask a more fundamental question first: what type of citation are you trying to create? An explicit reference note (footnote or endnote that points to an exact item) or a more generic source list entry? I'm hesitant to guess because your draft is a mixture of both.

Submitted byJlwiebeon Mon, 09/23/2019 - 07:24

I went back and reread EE2.38 to refresh myself on the difference. I'm practicing writing citations by writing citations for my whole collection, but now I realize I need to write 2 citations for each piece.

Let's try it again:

Reference Note:

     David Dixon,  "Emmanuel Church, The Parish Church of Newton-in-        Makerfield;" Geograph, ( : accessed 20 September 2019).

Source List:

Dixon, David. "Emmanuel Church, The Parish Church of Newton-in-         Makerfield." Geograph. ( : accessed 20 September 2019).

I'm assuming for a blog post I will only ever create a Reference Note -which is weird to me as I always think of the two things as complementary. 

Jennifer, as a rule, almost every citation created by a history researcher will be a reference note. Source list entries are used only for bibliographies, typically in the rear of a book or in a lecture handout. Otherwise, in research reports and historical narratives, every assertion that is not "public knowledge" should have a reference note attached to identify its source.

In your reference note above, we could make a couple of punctuation tweaks:

  1. Between the article title and the website title, the punctuation should be a comma rather than a semicolon. In a citation, semicolons mark a division between layers of the citation; in every form of writing, semicolons mark a major division in though. Commas (as in all forms of writing) are used to separate items in a series when those items are of equal weight.
  2. After the title of the website, you have two punctuation marks in a row: a comma and an open-parens. The comma should be removed. When we put something in parentheses, we are saying  "All this material within the parentheses modifies what comes before it." In this citation, the parenthetical data modifies the title of the website, saying where that website is published. In contrast, a comma's purpose is to separate. As used above, it separates the website title and the parenthetical data that should be attached to the title.

In the source list entry, there is one punctuation issue--again an issue of stacking two punctuation marks in a row. Notice that in a source list entry, each element of the citation is followed by a period. Places of publication, whether physical or virtual, are not placed in parentheses. Because source list entries put periods (an end of sentence punctuation mark) between each element, the "sentence" in which the URL appears has nothing within it, in front of the URL, for it to modify. Hence, no parentheses.  

Now that we've waded this far into the punctuation weeds, I might as well add: this isn't just a matter of nitpicking rules set by Evidence Style. All the above is standard practice across all longstanding citation styles.

Submitted byJlwiebeon Mon, 09/23/2019 - 14:49

Thank you! I really appreciate this lesson; you explain it so clearly!