Be willing to "look beyond" preconcieved notions in spelling
Spelling variation is a common problem for researchers, to say nothing of outright errors in spelling and transcription error. In her article, "Looking Beyond 'Your' Spelling," Shelley Poblete explores some common causes of spelling variation and error, in addition to providing tips on using "wild card" and Soundex searches to help you get past spelling variation and error. One of the big things for researchers is to keep an open mind in all things, and be willing to "look beyond" preconceived notions whether in time, place, or what you consider to be the "right" name" or the "correct" spelling of a name. You may be pleasantly surprised.