Abstract: Using data on place of origin of today’s country populations and the indicators of level of development in 1500 used by Acemoglu, Johnson, and Robinson (2002), we confirm a reversal of fortune for colonized countries as territories, but find persistence of fortune for people and their descendants. Persistence results are at least as strong for three alternative measures of early development, for which reversal for territories, however, fails to hold. Additional exercises lend support to Glaeser et al.’s (2004) view that human capital is a more fundamental channel of influence of precolonial conditions on modern development than is quality of institutions.