We used to be called "Arm Chair Genealogists" because we never went onsite to do research. Back then, before the Internet was available to the public, I wrote lots of letters to archives, repositories, libraries, court houses, etc. None of them charged a fee to ask a question, but there were fees for copies plus postage if they had a record in which I was interested.
Times haven't really changed all that much for me. I still do my research from home, only I use the Internet to find the resources before I write a letter or send an email request.
One of my favorite resources are newspapers. I can spend hours browsing through newspaper microfilm!
My research is focused on New York. I am not able to travel to New York so I appreciate two wonderful sites that have some newspapers digitized and freely available online. One I have mentioned in other posts, www.fultonhistory.com, and the other one is Northern New York Historical Newspapers, http://news2.nnyln.net/. Fulton History covers the whole state of New York. Both websites use the same search engine and I always select "the exact phrase" so I can find Mrs. Bishop, or Clarence E Bishop or James L Bishop. Otherwise, I will receive hits for the Bishop of the Catholic Church. Check out my other posts of transcriptions of the newspaper articles I found on these two sites.
I use these two sites to research my Hoag, Holly/Holley, Graves, Bishop, Fall, and other lines that originated in Northern New York. I have also visited the Library of Congress website and searched through their digitized newspaper collection.
I really appreciate all the hours spent digitizing these newspapers! Best part of genealogy is sharing resources and good finds!
Keep up the hunt!