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Louis B. HannaEleventh Governor

  • Residence: Fargo, Cass County
  • Years Served: 1913-1917
  • Date of Inauguration: January 8, 1913
  • Age at Inauguration: 51
  • Politics: Republican
  • Born: New Brighton, Pennsylvania - August 9, 1861
  • Died: Fargo, North Dakota - April 23, 1948

Political Background:

  • 1895-1897: North Dakota House of Representatives
  • 1897-1901: North Dakota State Senate
  • 1905-1909: North Dakota State Senate
  • 1909-1913: United States House of Representatives
  • 1913-1917: Governor of North Dakota

Born in New Brighton, Pennsylvania, Louis B. Hanna grew up and received his education in Massachusetts and New York.In 1881 L. B. Hanna and his brother, Robert C. Hanna, came to Dakota Territory and began farming near Hope. L. B. Hanna sold his land in 1882 and moved to Page where he began his career as a businessman. He started a retail lumber company, then expanded into grain handling. Soon he needed banking facilities, so he opened a private bank at Page. The bank became a state bank, then became the First National Bank of Page. Hanna served as president.Hanna moved to Fargo in 1899, serving as vice president of the First National Bank of Fargo. During his second term in the State Senate he represented the Ninth (Fargo) District. During Hanna's term as governor, he, his family, and a committee went to Norway. On July 4, 1914, at Christiania, they presented the people of Norway with a statue of Abraham Lincoln. Later, King Haakon VI of Norway decorated Governor Hanna with the Grand Cross of Saint Olaf of the First Rank. Governor Hanna served as chairman of the Liberty Loan drives in 1917 and 1918. During World War I he served in France as a captain in the American Red Cross. He was cited as an officer of the French Legion of Honor by the French government. Hanna continued his business interests in agriculture, banking, and other enterprises until his retirement. Louis Benjamin Hanna had successful lumber, grain handling, and banking businesses in the Red River Valley.

An interior view of the capitol, 1913
An interior view of the capitol, 1913.

Several interesting details can be observed in Governor Hanna's office. Notice the stenciled design on the walls, above the wood wainscoting. There is a telephone beside the governor's desk, and pencils and quill pens are scattered near his documents and correspondence.

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