I have two point feature shapefiles that have no overlapping points, but have a field I would like to merge. The data was created from 2 different types of GPS, and some points were added later by hand.
For instance, imagine a county with 20 points in one file, and 30 points in another file, each of which has an associated iron value.
Is there anyway to merge the two shapefiles - ideally, put the points and single important field from the second added onto the first?
You're using the Merge tool, correct? If you have your two fields, you can use the Field Mapping section to determine which fields you want joined, or merged. Click on plus sign next to the field you're working with; if it only shows one field from your first input layer, then you'll know the same field in the second input layer will not be mapped, or merged, to that field. Right click on the field and go to Add Input Field. A list of available fields will display, so select the field from your second input layer to make sure that the fields you want mapped merge successfully.
Just another way to skin this cat: create an empty point feature class with a schema of your design. Use the simple data loader and load each of your feature classes using the field mapping feature it provides. You can then load additional feature classes as the become available. Similar to merging, but a little different as well....