The FamilySearch website is a free website containing a large database of records from all over the world. Contained in the database is Ancestral File, US 1880, UK 1881 and Canadian 1881 census returns, International Genealogical Index (IGI), Pedigree Resource File, Social Security Death Index, Vital Records Index and many documents to help in research efforts. Recently they added Vermont Vital records from 1760-1908! FamilySearch has many different parts that may help you in your quest:
familysearch - The main website for searching records and digital images from over 100 countries.
familysearch wiki - An online encycolpedia that helps you find research information or share your knowledge.
Give back to familysearch - Join over 100,000 volunteers online to index billions of genealogical records worldwide. Completed indexes are published online for free.
Family History Archive at BYU - FamilySearch is working with select libraries to digitize and publish online personal, local and county histories.
The Ellis Island site includes the American Family Immigration History Center with genealogy and passenger search tabs.
The National Archives and Records Administration mission is to preserve valuable records and make them available to the public.
The USGenWeb Project
USGenWeb is maintained by volunteers who work together to provide free genealogical research for every county in every state in the US. The project is always looking for volunteers. Can't find the county you need? Think of volunteering by adopting a town website.
Quebec Genealogy Records Online
A listing of Quebec online genealogy resources, some general and a listing by county. Click here to begin your search!
New England Ancestors
The New England Historic Genealogical Society website is full of information relating to genealogy research. This site contains online presentations on conducting research, topics pertaining to various research topics and town guides for the New England states. While the premium databases are not part of the free website, it is still a valuable tool in tracing your roots.
RootsWeb, part of the Ancestry.com community, contains information guides on starting to research your family tree, a soundex converter. metasearch of multiple web sites and databases, the SSDI (Social Security Death Index) and much more.