One of the reasons family history is among the most popular hobbies in America is because of the vast amount of information that is available online. This is also one of the great challenges in doing genealogy - there is so much information out there, where do you search first? And then next?
BestSteps Genealogy evolved from the need we saw in our professional research to make sure we were utilizing the best sources out there for our clients. We would ask each other, "What do you think is the best source to find...?"
In searching for the best methodology we have learned from research experience, reading books and blogs, listening to webinars, and attending genealogy conferences. We have compiled notes and created reference sheets for our research. The purpose of this site is to provide one place for family historians to learn the best methods for doing research. As you know, methods have to adapt for time and region, but with some general principles to start from, your research can become more successful.
We plan to share our summary sheets, our favorite websites, and the priority order we use while trying to solve a research problem. On the reference sheets, records to search are listed in general order, starting with the records most likely to be successful due to record content and ease of access. This order may need to be adapted based on your specific research, time period, or region.
For most family historians, we have all hit brick walls in our research. Our experience is that most of these brick walls just need a new approach and some additional records, repositories, or methods to try. We want to share those with other genealogists. So come and learn new information and find new ways to succeed in your research!