On January 22, 1863, the Polish ‘Central National Committee’ proclaimed the outbreak of an uprising and issued a manifesto whereby it proclaimed itself the Interim National Government. The document appealed to all the inhabitants of the former Polish-Lithuanian Rzeczpospolita (Commonwealth), within its pre-partition borders, to fight against tsarist rule for liberty. The manifesto heralded the emergence of an independent Poland and promised to resolve the most urgent social issues, such as equal rights for all citizens regardless of ethnic origin or religion. The Manifesto is addressed to “the Nation of Poland, Lithuania, and Ruthenia”, which signified that the uprising was a political act hearkening to the tradition of the political nation of the pre-partition Rzeczpospolita. The provisions concerning the recognition of the serfs’ ownership of land were of key importance, as the Committee wanted the peasants to fight inr the insurrection. Serfs were to obtain the land they cultivated as their own property; landless peasants who joined the fighting were to be granted apportionments from the national estate, whereas the heirs to such lands were to receive indemnification from the treasury of independent Poland.
The author of the manifesto was Maria Ilnicka.