Hi Mike, welcome to beemaster! Start with at least two hives is my advice. One could be stronger than the other and you can draw from the stronger one to strengthen the weak one. You could wind up with two strong ones but you just don't have anything to compare to with just one hive. Go to Michael Bush's site, www.bushfarms.com
, he is a member of this site. His site has an abundance of ideas for the beginner as well as the advanced beekeeper. Mike you will see that no two beekeepers are alike in their approach to beekeeping, so opinions will vary. Beekeeping is about discovering what works for you, you will develop your own preferences, enjoy the journey.