A locational name which derives from one of the villages of Newport in Essex, Devon, Gloucester, The Isle of Wight, Shropshire etc, although research suggests that early recordings of the name were from the Essex Village. Like most locational names, Newport would have been given to the name holder when he or she moved to another area, or held the name as the Lord of the Manor. The origin of the name is French, and it was a Norman introduction after 1066 as 'Nieuport' - the dweller at or from the New Port. The name spellings were Neuport (1273), Newporte (1574) and Newport (1654). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de Neufort. which was dated 1273, The Hundred Rolls of Buckingham during the reign of King Edward 1 The Hammer of the Scots 1272 - 1307 Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.