Some indentured servants had their contract of service worked out with waiting American colonists who would be their masters for four to seven years. Others, upon arrival, were bought and sold much in the same manner as slaves.
Indentured servants had few rights. They could not vote. Without the permission of their masters, they were not allowed to marry, to leave their houses or travel, nor buy or sell anything. In the 1600s, most indentured servants were put to work in the tobacco fields of Virginia and Maryland. This was hard manual labor under the grueling hot summer sun, under which Europeans were not accustomed to working.Most indentured servants who survived the frrst four to seven years in America were freed. The master was required (depending upon the rules of the colony) to provide his former servant with the following: clothing, two hoes, three barrels of corn, and fifty acres of land.