This name, with variant spellings Newsom, Newsam, Newsum and Newsham, is of northern English locational origin from any of the several places in the North and West Riding of Yorkshire called Newsham, or from Newsham in Durham near Yarm, in Lancashire near Aeston and in Northumberland. The name derives from a contracted form of the Olde English pre 7th Century 'neowan husum' meaning 'at the new houses', for example, Newham in Kirby Wiske (Yorkshire North Riding), recorded as Newehusum in the Domesday Book of 1086, appears as Newsum in the 1202 Fine Court Rolls of that county. The surname is first recorded towards the end of the 12th Century, (see below). One, Willelmus de Newsome appears in the 1379 'Poll Tax Returns of Yorkshire', and on August 18th 1583 Catherine Newsome and Robert Crossfield were married in Snaith, Yorkshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert de Neusum, which was dated 1195, 'The Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire', during the reign of King Richard I, Richard the Lionheart, 1189 - 1199. 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.