Following his inauguration of governor of Union-held Louisiana on March 4, 1864, perhaps no governor was held in greater respect than was Michael Hahn. As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives early in the war, Hahn had met and befriended Abraham Lincoln, president of the United States.
While General Nathaniel Banks was in charge of Louisiana, he favored moderation in the exercise of government; Hahn supported Banks’ views, while radical Unionists favored a less moderate, stricter rule for the state. When Hahn won election, a grateful Banks financed his inauguration.
Yet after Banks was replaced by General Stephen Hurlbut as commander of the Department of the Gulf, Hurlbut refused to recognize the Hahn government, forcing Hahn to resign on March 3, 1865, after 364 days as governor.