This is the comprehensive story of some of the most radical attack aircraft ever designed to operate from an aircraft carrier. These incredible projects were developed in 1948 to equip the USS United States, an immense 65,000-ton supercarrier that was to have been the core of the Navy's nascent strategic nuclear bombardment capability. Legendary aerospace companies such as Convair, Curtiss-Wright, Douglas, Fairchild, Lockheed, Martin, North American, Northrop, and Republic would each submit proposals to the competitions. Varying widely in appearance, these studies ranged from Douglas's relatively small and modern Model 593 to their unconventional Model 1186 series, which was inspired by the X-3 Stiletto and featured a small parasite aircraft mounted atop a gigantic missile. Recently declassified, details of these fascinating projects are presented here for the first time.