I have an MXD with all our data organized and displayed with the appropriate symbology, that took quite some time to make. It is used as the basic map that a number of people use here and customize for their own purposes. However, there is a strange "artifact" that seems to exist in one spot. It is an old polygon of some data that has been since updated. It will show up in the map regardless of whether all the data is turned off or not. Even if all the data is removed, it still persists. I tried selecting it, thinking maybe it was some label turned to annotation but the "delete" in the right click menu is greyed out. It seems deleting the data frame will remove it, but remaking this mxd would be more trouble than just dealing with the artifact.

How can I get rid of this?

  • What is the source data type for this layer (e.g. shapefile, gdb....etc)?
    – artwork21
    Dec 14, 2015 at 16:51
  • Can you open an editing session and delete it?
    – BlakeG
    Dec 14, 2015 at 16:56
  • 4
    Did you check to see if it was a graphic, rather than spatial data? Sounds like it might be some feature converted to a graphic. Try deleting it using the the drawing toolbar.
    – cl3
    Dec 14, 2015 at 17:12
  • 4
    It may be a graphic added by the 'draw' toolbar. These are just added to the map document itself, like a text box, and not to a layer. If you select it using the Select Elements arrow, you should be able to delete it.
    – MaryBeth
    Dec 14, 2015 at 17:14
  • Turns out it was a graphic from the drawing toolbar! Not sure how I didn't think of that, let alone how it got in there in the first place. Thanks all for your help.
    – Andre
    Dec 14, 2015 at 17:23

1 Answer 1


MaryBeth and cl3 nailed it, it was a graphic from the "Draw" toolbar and was selectable and deleted.

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