Ask A Cartographer

Listing attributes under legend items

November 02 2010 | 3 comments
Categories: Map Elements

I am trying to creating a watershed map based on a USGS HUC shapefile. The watershed delineations are hierarchical, so within one main watershed their are several smaller watersheds. My map looks fine, the problem is that I am trying to get a legend which lists the subwatersheds, which correspond with a number on the map, underneath the color coded main watersheds. Is there a way to do this? The attached file is an example of what I would like created using MS Paint.


Mapping Center Answer:

This is possible but it is not an automatic solution. It is mostly a matter of using multiple copies of the layers in the Table of Contents and setting the visibility of the subgroups using outline and fills of No Color. Here is a map I tried it out on showing just a few counties by FIPS code in Oregon, Washington and Idaho.

Legend groups - map

This is what the legend looks like close up.

Legend groups - legend

This is how I set the layers up in my Table of Contents.

Legend groups - Table of Contents

And this is how the legend proeprties were set.

Legend groups - legend properties

I know it's a workaround posted by Aileen Buckley on Nov 3 2010 9:48AM
I know that the method I described above is a workaround so if you would like to see this as a software enhancement, you might want to submit this on the ArcGIS Ideas page -- you can get to the Ideas Web page on the fourth tab here on Ask a Cartographer. If the request has already been made, your vote of support will help to give the idea more notice!
thanks posted by Mike Battaglia on Nov 3 2010 10:01AM
I was able to get it to work based on your suggestion, it took a while because there were 15 watersheds and 60 smaller watersheds within those. It came out looking good though. Thanks for the suggestion and I will submit the idea. I feel like there are a good deal of instances when an automatic option to do that would come in handy.
Glad it worked! posted by Aileen Buckley on Nov 3 2010 10:13AM
Glad it worked and I encourage you to submit the idea! Others reading this -- if you want to, you can vote on it to give it more prominence!

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