A German surname, Zinn comes from the Middle High German term ‘zin’ which refers to a worker of pewter. Variations in spelling Zinn include Zinner, Cinn, Czinn, Zinne, Czinner and Zinnert. The region of Bohemia, Germany is where the early Zinn families lived. In England the Zinn families primarily reside in the city of London, Middlesex, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Cheshire counties. Within the United States early settlers with the Zinn surname lived in Pennsylvania, New York, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri and California. Famous: Howard Zinn (a renown American historian), Walter Henry Zinn (a nuclear physicist who helped develop the first chain reaction in 1942) and Johann Gottfied Zinn (a German anatomist and botanist who worked on the structure of the human eye).