Adult hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) with serially transplantable activity comprise two subtypes. One shows a balanced output of mature lymphoid and myeloid cells; the other appears selectively lymphoid deficient. We now show that both of these HSC subtypes are present in the fetal liver (at a 110 ratio) with the rarer, lymphoid-deficient HSCs immediately gaining an increased representation in the fetal bone marrow, suggesting that the marrow niche plays a key role in regulating their ensuing preferential amplification. Clonal analysis of HSC expansion posttransplant showed that both subtypes display an extensive but variable self-renewal activity with occasional interconversion. Clonal analysis of their differentiation programs demonstrated functional and molecular as well as quantitative HSC subtype-specific differences in the lymphoid progenitors they generate but an indistinguishable production of multipotent and myeloid-restricted progenitors. These findings establish a level of heterogeneity in HSC differentiation and expansion control that may have relevance to stem cell populations in other hierarchically organized tissues.