This uncommon name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational surname deriving from the place called Fulstow near Louth in north Lincolnshire. The place is first recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as "Fugelestou", and in early Lincolnshire Records of 1115 as "Fuglestowa"; the name means "Fugol's place", or possibly "Fugol's hermitage". The derivation is from the Olde English pre 7th Century byname "Fugol", from "fugol", bird, with the Olde English "stow", a term that has a number of possible interpretations, ranging from "place, inhabited place, holy place, hermitage, monastery" or "meeting-place". In this instance, the Fugol concerned is thought to have been a hermit. Locational surnames, such as this, were acquired by the lord of the manor, and local landowners, and especially by those former inhabitants of a place who had moved to another area, usually in search of work, and who were thereafter best identified by the name of their birthplace. Recordings of the name from Lincolnshire Church Registers include: the christening of Robert, son of Michaell Fulstow, at Ulceby by Barton, on February 23rd 1639, and the marriage of Matthew Fulstow and Elizabeth Tackill on July 15th 1667, at Kirmington. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Fulstey, which was dated October 23rd 1559, marriage to Joane Tuffeild, at St. Dunstan in the East, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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.

Surnames reference. 2013.

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