Dr. Carl Benn joined Ryerson in 2008 as both a faculty member and Chair of the Department of History. Before then, he worked in the museum field for several decades, where he fulfilled senior curatorial and managerial duties, restored historical properties, curated exhibits and period-room settings, and produced educational and other public services. He oversaw the department’s operations from 2008 to 2013, with the highlight being the introduction of a new degree in History as well as a History Minor. Since completing his five-year term as chair, he has been able to devote more time to teaching and research.
His courses at Ryerson focus on museum history, curatorship, heritage management, material culture, and archaeology. He was the recipient of the Dean’s Teaching Award in 2012 and is a member of the graduate faculty.
Dr. Benn’s extensive publications include six history books. His most recent is A Mohawk Memoir from the War of 1812: John Norton – Teyoninhokarawen (2019). In 2020, it won the Canadian Historical Association’s Clio Prize for the best book on the history of Ontario. Currently he is writing a book on the history of the Royal Ontario Museum.