Genealogietools_nl_-_WieWasWie_formatter.jpg - WieWasWie formatter

Privacy Level: Public (Green)
Date: [unknown] [unknown]
Location: Netherlandsmap
Surnames/tags: wiewaswie apps
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Update April 27, 2024. The cause is known. The fix requires several days though. This affects a part of WieWasWie URLs. Most others still work.

April 25, 2024 Unfortunately, something does not seem right at this moment. The formatter stopped working this week. It will be looked at during the weekend of 27-28 April 2024. Please hang tight.


What is it?

A tool to format a wiewaswie link as a reference to the original source document.

WieWasWie is a great website provided by the Dutch Genealogical Bureau that has indexed millions of primary sources (all open data). It is available both in Dutch as English and provides free search based on one name. You can take a cheap subscription and search with two names.

As the sources given are true primary sources such as birth and death certificates, it is a great website to use as a source. Each record has a unique URL, making it easy to link to the document.

Many profiles already have a reference to the WieWasWie website such as But, just giving the link is not describing the source. In this case the source is a civil marriage record from Zandvoort, dated Feb 09, 1817 with id 1. It is held by the Noord-Holland Archive, which has the ownership of this document. So a full reference to the source should include this data.

The tool transforms this URL into a complete reference to the original document at the archive:

<ref name="BSHu73347">Burgerlijke Stand Huwelijk 1817, Zandvoort, Noord-Holland, Nederland. Akte 1 (1817-02-09), Noord-Hollands Archief accessed via [ WieWasWie Permalink]</ref>

The formatter tool at was made to ease the creation of a reference that can be used via copy-paste in WikiTree profiles.


  1. Go to wiewaswie and search for the source document
  2. Copy the URL from the 'Copy URL' box. This always has /detail/NUMBER at the end.
  3. Have the tool opened at and paste the copied URL into the search box.
  4. The tool will get the data from the document and pre-format the reference, including the <ref> tags.
  5. Use the Copy button and paste the reference into the WikiTree profile as an inline reference.
  6. When you are adding a new profile, paste it in the sources area and then edit the profile to move it inline.


Copy this URL (permalink) from a WieWasWie document page.
Enter the URL in this box.
Formatted reference, ready to copy into a profile as inline citation. Use the Copy button to copy it.

Other usages

From version 2020.9.6 onwards, you can also transform old style wiewaswie links to new references. So URLs that look like can be entered at the search screen.


  1. I like it and want to show my appreciation/ I do not like it and wish to give my suggestions. Go to the G2G post and leave an answer. Please describe your suggestion as complete as possible.
  2. I want the reference to look different. Leave an answer at the G2G post. Please include as many details as possible
  3. Do I need a subscription to use WieWasWie? No, but it is really nice of you if you do become a supporter of the CBG. They do a lot of good work for Dutch Genealogy and are a not for profit organisation. Running the webservice is costly, so please consider subscribing.
  4. Is a commercial party? No
  5. Is linked to or Inc? No
  6. Is linked to CBG? Not at this moment.
  7. Why is this app not on the app server of has started as a private educational project (learning Python3). It was a lot easier and safer to do this on a separate machine than on the shared App server.
  8. This tool is slow. Yes, it tends to be slow (2 to 5 seconds) at busy times in the week, as it needs to get the data from WieWasWie and we have chosen a very gentle way to get the data from that site. WieWasWie does not provide a fast API unfortunately. Usually it takes 0 to 3 seconds to get the formatted reference.
  9. The URL I have is much longer. Please open the URL in your browser. It should redirect to a shorter one, ending at '/detail/NUMBER', with NUMBER being a number like 123456789. Use that URL instead.
  10. What are the other plans with genealogietools? There is a wealth of information one can extract from primary sources. One of the ideas is to give automated suggestions based on a combination of the document, its occurrence on WikiTree and known other data. If you want to help testing this -difficult- implementation, then contact Michel via a private message. Please describe your level of technical knowledge in your private message, the testing is only for users that can deal with broken software.


Comments: 8

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Hello Michel, the formatter still doesn't work?

Groeten Enoch

posted by Enoch Stuivenberg
Hi Michel,

nice tool you have there. Is there any way to hand over the URL as get parameter? Then one could also call it from other tools.

Thanks and kind regards from Black Forest

posted by Florian Straub
Thanks for your help. I've now created a bookmarklet to open it from a WieWasWie detail page:

Feel free to check out the first part of my video on how to install bookmarklets.

posted by Florian Straub
Hi Michel!

Your "slow" tool works wonders, and is really fast with openarch-entries. I encountered this error today, while formatting the link the result was an Internal Server error. The corresponding link did get formatted.

posted by B. W. J. Molier
Hi Michel,

I tried the conversion tool and noted that not all links work. For the URL I got the following conversion <ref name="BSGe71832">Burgerlijke Stand Geboorte 1899, Kerkrade, Limburg, Nederland. Akte 186 (1899-05-08), Regionaal Historisch Centrum Limburg accessed via WieWasWie Permalink, view via OpenArch</ref>

All links work except the openarch link gives an error that the page has been moved. I wonder if this is a common error (I did not check this yet) and that I need to remove the openarch links.

Kind Regards, Charles

posted by Charles Hensgens
Yes, I've encountered the OpenArch URL being bad a few times. There is a know issue from what I've heard
posted by Coen Jacob Dijkgraaf
Hi Michiel,

I tried it in this profile Hendrikus Korevaar (1898-1955) however it doesn't look well. Behind [1] it creates </ref> and the reference under source doesn't look good either.

With kind regards, Carolina.

Hey Carolina,

The resulting string does already include the tags for inline references. I have removed the duplicate tags (<ref>....</ref>) from the bio. Does it look okay for you now?

What I usually do is either copy-paste it inline, or with a new profile I copy the whole string into the sources field and then in a second round (which you always need) I move the inline reference to the correct event.

posted by Michel Vorenhout

Categories: Vorenhout-1