The prototype of the Vought OS2U was contracted in 1937. The first 54 aircraft to reach the U.S. Navy was in August 1940 mainly based out of Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. The aircraft were mainly used for observation and scouting missions, and they were the most used by the U.S. Navy during World War II for such use. The aircraft also served onboard U.S. Navy battleships and cruisers, where they supported shore bombardments and air-sea rescues. Notable use of the aircraft was during the Aleutian Islands campaign. The Kingfisher aircraft were slowly replaced by the Curtiss SC Seahawk.
Image: 80-G-K-13592: OS2U-3 "Kingfisher" aircraft hoisted onto a battleship catapult, late 1942. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.