Samuel S. Shinn was born circa 1835 in Philadelphia, PA. His final enlistment was on 14 April 1864 aboard the U.S.S. Minnesota at Hampton Roads, VA as a seaman for a 2 2/3 year enlistment. He was in the Navy since he was at least sixteen per previous enlistment returns, however between his previous Navy discharge in 1863 and the enlistment aboard the Minnesota, he did a short stint in the Army before being transferred.
Shinn was immediately sent to the U.S.S. Tecumseh  as a petty officer with the rating of Gunner's Mate.
Shinn was one of the survivors of the sinking of the Tecumseh on 5 August 1864, escaping in the monitor's cutter . From an interview shipmate Frank Cousins gave years later, Shinn was apparently the only survivor from the magazine.
However Shinn wouldn't keep his new paygrade for very long since per despatch #543, Shinn's CO reported that he was put into the brig on 28 October for being intoxicated while on watch. As a result he was busted down by Farragut back to seaman.
Per his rendezvous index card, Shinn deserted from the Navy on 30 November 1864 .
Awards & Memorials
Alternate Spellings of Name
References and Sources Return of the United States Naval Rendezvous, U.S.S. Minnesota at Hampton Roads for the week ending 1864
 Return of the United States Naval Rendezvous, New York, NY, for the week ending 3 November 1860
 NARA T1099. An index to rendezvous reports during the Civil War, 1861-1865.
"Report of Rear-Admiral Farragut, U.S. Navy, transmitting report of two survivors from the U.S. Monitor Tecumseh, August 27 1864" Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion: Series I, Volume 21 West Gulf Blockading Squadron from January 1 to December 31, 1864 (1906)