The core purpose of the Beasley Genealogy Project is identifying the broadest and most accurate record of Beasley's and Beasly families of all spellings. Any Beasley of any spelling anywhere in the world is to be included in the project including descendants of Beasley's. This is to be a central gathering place of information organized for long term collaboration and research. In general, the use of "Beasley" is used to represent all spellings collectively due to its being the most widely used spelling.
It is generally true that those interested in Beasley genealogy are born, adopted or married into a Beasley family, or descendants of a Beasley or working on behalf of a member a Beasley family. Each member of the Beasley Project is recorded in a distinct relationship to other related individuals. Since genealogy is fundamentally a relational endeavor, the core means of organization of people, families and data is in terms of how each person is, or is not, related to each other person.
The basic building blocks of these relationships are the family tree. In a One-Name Study such as the Beasley Project that is a special kind of tree we call the Patriarch Tree. Each Patriarch begins as a connection between a Beasley Project member and their earliest known Beasley ancestor. The Patriarch Tree consists of all identified direct descendants of that Beasley ancestor.
The key organizing principles of the Patriarch Tree is EVIDENCE and GENETICS.
EVIDENCE: Too often, family trees are built without regard to evidence or documentation. Errors are copied and replicated. Evidence may be strong or weak, offering a degree of certainty, probablility or possibility suggesting direction for further research. In the Beasley Project, recording and preserving evidence is of primary importance. Theories and conventional wisdom may be presented, but always to be tested by evidence. Evidence rules.
GENETICS: DNA testing is the new frontier of genealogy. The principle of genetics in a One-Name Study is that historically, at least over much of the past millenium, surnames have been passed from father to child. Simultaneously the "Y" Chromosome is passed from Father to Son. The record of the Y Chromosome and the family name being passed from father to son for many generations provides a valuable link to the past. When unbroken by "Non-Paternal Events" (NPE), that is, extramarital conception or adoption, for example, this genetic record can provide a link to the pre-history of human migration from many thousands of years.
To that end, the Project attempts to collect DNA evidence to provide a genetic type for each family line. In terms of YDNA testing, this is called "Haplotype". Each YDNA tested individual provides a genetic type for that line. Research is developing a lot of detail in these types, but for the purpose of this study, we refer to the broadest YDNA haplotypes. There are many dozens of these broad types, but so far, only four of them have been identified among Beasley families.