A lot of research can be done before you ever get to the point where you need to travel.
If you're just beginning maybe you are unaware of the GenWeb Project.Here is a little something I typed and saved in WORD so I could copy, paste and send along without forgetting parts of it.
Texas began keeping vital records in 1903; you can obtain a copy of death certificate, which should show the names and birth locations of the parents of deceased.
Hyperlink below for TXGenWeb site.Scroll down to “TX County Index” option, find your county and click and look at everything.Sites are manned by volunteers, so they vary in material and information offered.Some will have a list of volunteers who offer to do lookups.Post your query; plus, ask if anyone has a copy of a county history, and will they check their copy for any possible information on your family.If cemeteries not online, ask if a collection of material, or book has been published on local cemeteries, and can someone check the index for you. http://www.rootsweb.com/~txgenweb/http://www.rootsweb.com/~txgenweb/
TX is a state with lots of good “stuff”, click and look, try “Texas Research Help”, it will lead you to such as:Handbook of TX Online (good for those TX towns not on maps, early settlers, history etc); Confederate Museum (all Rebs); TX Ranger Museum (both museums have records); TX Confederate Pension Idx Online (different then Museum); TX State Library & Archives etc etc.
When you finish with “ALL” of TX, look for the very first option on that site – USGenWeb Project – click and you are at the U.S. level, from there you can choose any state, and county/counties within those states – you are off and running, again.
You can do the same with Gadsden [note spelling] which is in Etowah Co, AL.Be sure to post queries on all the sites you visit.Other descendants might be researching, too.Keep your fingers crossed. (^_^)