Omeka "Lite" for Independent Researchers?

Hello All,
Please feel free to move this thread if another forum would be more appropriate but I am wondering the best way to use Omeka as an independent researcher who is unaffiliated with any institution?
More specifically, I am looking for a way to construct a template that could be used to map various narrative timelines using oral histories and individual family recollections. For example, my present project involves recollections of a family member who was a refugee in WW2-era Europe. Before I can add her actual timeline I want to build a base map that accurately displays contextual information like border changes and military advances for any respective date. I would also like to import additional layers displaying locations/dates of known bombing raids as well as historic aerial imagery for specific relevant locations.

I was initially going to cobble together a software stack incl. Mapbox, storymap.js and Odyssey.js but other researchers have been insisting that Omeka is the tool I've been looking for. The only problem is that they all work for institutions of some kind of another and already have instances set up.
Is there a recommended way of using Omeka for my very specific use-case?

Omeka does not require an institutional affiliation. To set up your own installation, you need a hosting service which provides the necessary infrastructure (most do, as Omeka's needs do not differ too greatly from other CMSes like Wordpress or Drupal.

If you'd like to get a sense of the basics of Omeka, you can sign up for a basic account (free) at La href=""> That would allow you to start on metadata entry, try out some of the steps from the documentation, etc. If you decided to move forward on a self-hosted site, you could use the Omeka API Import plugin to move data.

If you want to see how others have used Omeka for mapping projects, go to the list of Sites Using Omeka and search for Geolocation (a plugin) and Neatline (a suite of plugins developed by the Scholars' Lab at UVA).