This will give you an overview of Buddism from its beginnings until now.
This sites talks about the roots of modern Buddhism
I thought questions like this would be easy to answer until I actually moved to Asia. It is interesting to see how much stuff is done for actual religious reasons and how much is done simply because it's tradition. And this is in one small country - Taiwan. I'm sure it's very different in other countries in Asia as well.
However, a lot of the aspects of the religion itself remain the same. I constantly see Buddhist Monks meditating in a quiet place. People are gathered in prayer at large and small temples on a regular basis.
The hard part here is it's impossible to know where Buddhism, Taoism, and Confuscianism begin and end. It seems to be one mixed religion in Taiwan and I can't even get the locals to figure out which is which.
I don't think I helped a lot in answering your question except to point out that it is a difficult question to answer. Use the resources Guru provided and we'll be glad to help you if you post your answer.