Good column by Joseph Sobran, explaining how the United States went from a “they” to an “it”:
The change was violent, not natural. Lincoln waged war on states that tried to withdraw from the Union, denying their right to do so. This was a denial of the Declaration of Independence, which called the 13 former colonies “Free and Independent States.”
Lincoln may have saved the Union, but it’s not the same Union that’s described in the Constitution.