Johann Ernst Willmann, son of Johann Henrich Willmann & Maria Elisabeth Lieder, was born 17 April 1727 in Düdelsheim. He married Anna Maria Hartt, daughter of Johannes Hartt & Anna Dorthea Trieber, on 7 April 1766 in nearby Wolf. Anna Maria Hartt had been baptized 12 April 1739 in Wolf.
They immigrated to Russia, arriving from Lübeck at the port of Oranienbaum on 4 July 1766 aboard the English frigate Love & Unity under the command of Skipper Thomas Fairfax.
They settled in the Volga German colony of Messer on 18 June 1767 and are recorded there on the 1767 Census in Household No. 37.
Johann Ernst's sister, Philippina (who was baptized 30 May 1735 in Düdelsheim), also immigrated to Russia. She married Johann Konrad Popp on 31 May 1766 in the Reformed Church in Lübeck. They were on the same ship with Johann Ernst Willmann & his wife, arriving from Lübeck at the port of Oranienbaum on 4 July 1766 aboard the English frigate Love & Unity under the command of Skipper Thomas Fairfax.
By the time of the 1767 census, Johann Konrad Popp has died, and Philippina has remarried to the widower Jakob Ochsenhirt whose family had also been on the same English frigate.
- Decker, Klaus-Peter, Büdingen als Sammelplatz der Auswanderung an die Wolga 1766 (Büdingen: Geschichtswerkstatt Büdingen, 2009): 88.
- Mai, Brent Alan. 1798 Census of the German Colonies along the Volga: Economy, Population, and Agriculture (Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 1999): Ms65.
- Mai, Brent Alan and Dona Reeves-Marquardt. German Migration to the Russian Volga (1764-1767) (Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 2003): #1188.
- Parish records of Düdelsheim (LDS Intl Film #1201789).
- Parish records of Wolf.
- Pleve, Igor. Einwanderung in das Wolgagebiet, 1764-1767 Band 3 (Göttingen: Göttinger Arbeitskreis, 2005): 140.
- Pleve, Igor. Lists of Colonists to Russia in 1766: Reports by Ivan Kulberg (Saratov: Saratov State Technical University, 2010): #1720, #1818.