Show ContentsShinners History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Shinners surname originally appeared in Gaelic as Ó Sionnaigh, which is derived from "sionnach," which means "fox." 1

Early Origins of the Shinners family

The surname Shinners was first found in County Mayo (Irish: Maigh Eo) located on the West coast of the Republic of Ireland in the province of Connacht, where they held a family seat. This most ancient Irish surname is derived from Sionnach, the Fox, an epithet used by the Chief of the Irish Cathernaigh Clann, a branch of the northern Ui Fiachrach.

However, some of the family were found in England in early days and there, the name was an occupational name for a Shinner or Skinner from the Old English word "scinn" meaning "skin." 2 There we found John le Scinner in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1279 in Cambridgeshire; Geoffrey le Schinner in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex in 1296; and John Schynnere in Hampshire in 1305. 2

The shortened form of the name Shinn or Shynn was first found in Suffolk in the Pipe Rolls of 1165 where Herveus Schinn was listed. Hugo Scin was later found in the Pipe Rolls for Herefordshire in 1190. 2

Early History of the Shinners family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Shinners research. Another 98 words (7 lines of text) covering the year 1845 is included under the topic Early Shinners History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Shinners Spelling Variations

Numerous spelling variations of the surname Shinners exist. A partial explanation for these variants is that ancient scribes and church officials recorded names as they were pronounced, often resulting in a single person being recorded under several different spellings. Different spellings that were found include Shiner, Shinner, Shunny, Shunagh, Shunnagh, Shinnick, Shinnock, Shinick and many more.

Early Notables of the Shinners family

More information is included under the topic Early Shinners Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Shinners migration to the United States +

Irish families began to immigrate to British North America and the United States in the 18th century, but the greatest influx of Irish immigrants came during the Great Potato Famine of the late 1840s. The earlier settlers came to North America after a great deal of consideration and by paying relatively high fees for their passage. These settlers were primarily drawn by the promise of land. Those later settlers that came during the 1840's were trying to escape the conditions of poverty, starvation, disease, and death that had stricken Ireland. Due to the enormity of their numbers and the late date of their arrival, these immigrants primarily became hired laborers instead of homesteading settlers like their predecessors. An exhaustive search of immigration and passenger lists has revealed many Irish immigrants North America bearing the name Shinners:

Shinners Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Luke Shinners who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1855

Contemporary Notables of the name Shinners (post 1700) +

  • John Joseph Shinners (1947-2022), American football offensive lineman in the NFL for the New Orleans Saints, Baltimore Colts, and Cincinnati Bengals
  • Ralph Peter Shinners (1895-1962), American Major League Baseball centerfielder from Monches, Wisconsin who played for the New York Giants and St. Louis Cardinals from 1922 through 1925
  • Brian Shinners (b. 1949), former Australian rules footballer who played with Richmond (1969) and Hawthorn (1970-1972)
  • Kevin Shinners (b. 1945), former Australian rules footballer who played with Richmond (1967-1968)
  • Paul Shinners (b. 1959), English preacher, exorcist, spiritual healer, proponent of the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Act from Westminster, London

  1. O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X) on Facebook