The National Genealogical Society publishes a series of books entitled Research in the States. Each volume covers the history, laws, records and research facilities of a state. It provides guidance for online resources as well.
Titles available to this point include:
- Arkansas by Lynda Childers Suffridge, BSE, MSE
- Colorado by Kathleen W. Hinckley
- Illinois by Diane Renner Walsh, CG
- Maryland by Patricia Obrien Shawker, CG
- Michigan by Shirley M. DeBoer, CG
- Missouri by Pamela Boyer Porter, CG, CGL and Ann Carter Fleming, CG, CGL
- New Jersey by Claire Keenan Agthe
- North Carolina by Jeffrey L. Haines, CG
- Ohio by Diane Vanskiver Gagel
- Oregon by Connie Miller Lenzen, CG
- Pennsylvania by Kay Haviland Freilich, CG, CGL
- Tennessee by Chuck Sherrill
- Virginia by Eric G. Grundset
- West Virginia by Barbara Vines Little, CG
These books are available in print as well as in PDF format. They are approximately 50 pages each. Some states are addressed within the covers of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ).
For my own research, I have picked up the PDF versions of the Virginia and West Virginia books, in PDF format. As a member of the NGS, I have also downloaded the PDF version of the latest issue of the NGSQ, Vol. 98, No. 1, March 2010, which includes “Research in Nebraska” by Roberta “Bobbi” King.
I have devoured each of these books, taking notes about sources, methods, how records changed, and so on, in order to get the most out of my research time.
At $8 for the PDF and $14.50 for the printed version (members price; non-members pay $10 and $17.50), these are an incredible value, allowing you to focus your research. Highly recommended.