Session 2: Setting up Omeka

  • Sign up for an account (you can have one account – and thereby one free site – per email account)
    • Choose the free Basic Plan

Omeka sign up

  • Complete the form – make sure you record the password and email address that you enter!

Sign up form

  • Check the email account you entered, find the email from and click on the link in  the message to activate your account
  • You will go to your ACCOUNT dashboard – click on Add a Site


  • ONE GROUP MEMBER ONLY (this is the site that your group will share for the project – other group members should also create a site to use to get familiar with Omeka, which can have whatever name you like!)

Add a site

  • subdomain name – soldier first name soldier last name (or something like that which is available)
  • title – Graffiti Soldier
  • description — ‘Project for NEH Landmarks in American History and Culture Workshop for Teachers, George Mason University, 2016’
  • Add new site
  • Your site will now appear in the account dashboard – click Manage Site


  • You are now in your SITE dashboard

site dashboard

  • Click on Plugins in the SITE Dashboard – plugins add functionality to your Omeka site
    1. Click the Install button for these plugins: Exhibit Builder, Hide Elements & Simple Pages
    2. Click on the title of your site in the top left to see what your empty site looks like
    3. Click on Omeka admin in the top right of your site to return to the SITE dashboard
  • Click on Appearance – the free version of comes with 4 themes – click on one of the Use this theme buttons to change the theme – and see what it looks like
    1. Note – the Season theme is the only theme in the free which displays full size items, above the description information. Other themes display thumbnails, which can be clicked to access the full image


  • Click on Items on the left menu, and then Add an item
  • Dublin Core is the set of categories that you can use to describe your item. They are all optional! We are going to use just the basic categories. The item we are going to add is a photograph you took today at Blenheim House

Add metadata

  1. Title? 
  2. Description? A brief description of what is in the document
  3. Creator? This could be who took the photograph or who created the object in the photograph. When working with historical records, the focus is the object in the photograph, so it should be the creator of the graffiti (which could be unknown soldier)
  4. Source? Blenheim House
  5. Date? Again, this could refer to the photograph or the object in it – so it is generally the date the graffiti was created.
  6. Contributor? You
  7. Rights? Up to you
  • Check the Public box under the Add Item button (if this is unchecked, your item will only be visible to people logged into your site)
  • Click Files at the top of the page

Add file

  1. Click Choose File and find the downloaded file
  2. Click Add Item

Browse Items

  • To see what your item looks like, click on the name of the item
    • This page is the admin view – click on View Public Page to see the public view

Look at item

  • Click on Plugins, scroll to Hide Elements, click on Configure
    1. Check the Elements we are not using in the Form column (this will mean they do not appear when you add an item)
    2. Click Save Changes



  • Do not do this until all the members of your group have set up an account
  • GROUP MEMBER WHO CREATED THE SOLDIER SITE ONLY – Click on Users in the menu on the top right – add the other members of your group &
    1. Make sure you use the same email address each group member used to create their accounts
    2. Each group member needs to accept that invitation