Tere is considerable disagreement over the origin of this surname. It appears to be locational, and with most name holders, this may well be true, in which case it derives from some place called "waella-mor" or similar in Olde English, meaning the "Wetlands or Fens". There were several areas or villages so named in East Anglia, and as the surname is well recorded in Essex, the research would seem well founded. However the Anglo-Saxon baptismal name "Wilmer" is also well recorded, and at some point in time the two spellings have overlapped. "Wilmer" comprises the elements Will which literally means "Strength of Mind" and maers - "Famous". Perhaps not surprisingly, this name was very popular prior to the Norman invasion of 1066. To this day "Wilmer" remains a popular personal name in America, although its use in the U K died out in the 18th century. What we can be certain about is that by the 16th century the spelling forms included Willmer, Wilmer, Wilsmer, Willmore, Wilsmore, Willsmore and many other variations. These developments included Dennis Wilsmore (female) who married Richard Brown at Saffron Walden, Essex on July 1st 1566, John Wylsmore whose daughter Judith was christened at St Giles Cripplegate, London on July 7th 1600, and John Willsmore, who married Dorothy Clark at Kelvedon near Colchester, on April 13th 1607. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de Wiltemore, which was dated 1221, in the assize court rolls of Worcestershire, during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman," 1216 - 1272. 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.