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I have produced thousands of png images and organised them into two folders on my server as follows:

1901/
  John.png
  Michael.png
  James.png
  Mary.png
  Jane.png

1911/
  John.png
  Michael.png
  James.png
  Mary.png
  Jane.png

So I currently have 2 images for each name.

At the moment I use php to dynamically create a html page for a given name, with the page displaying the two images associated with this name, for example:


Jane

1901

Jane's 1901 Image

1911

Jane's 1911 Image


I then have a wp home page which has a link to each of the names. Clicking on a link will result in the client being directed to the relevant dynamic page.

I wish to have a search box on my wp page which the client can use to filter the very long list of names. This will require a rest api at the backend. Can I use the wp rest api or should I build my own? Php is the only scripting language available on my host and I'm not a fan.

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