The original post didn't delve much into the Navy's development of inflight refueling of jets. One of the first inflight evaluations involved the North American AJ Savage, with an XAJ-1 being modified to replace the jet engine in the aft fuselage with a refueling reel, hose, and drogue.
North American apparently proposed an AJ-2 in this configuration but it would appear that the extra speed provided by the jet engine was considered to be of more benefit than reducing the available volume in the bomb bay.
As reported in the original Texaco post, Douglas developed the grandfather of what is now the standard externally mounted refueling store but there were alternatives. McDonnell evaluated a pod for the F3H that the Navy didn't buy. (I had assumed that it was developed by McAir but a caption in the 18 January 1957 issue of Flight identifies it as a Beechcraft Model 102-G refueling store.)
Vought also proposed one for the F7U/A2U program but it probably failed to even reach the hardware stage as a result of the Navy's loss of enthusiasm for the Cutlass. Only North American's design was deployed on the tanker buddy of its FJ-4B alternative to the A4D Skyhawk for nuclear weapon delivery. (Either the North American version was fielded as a backup up to the Douglas D-704 store, consistent with the Navy's belt and suspenders approach to aircraft development at the time, or the low-wing configuration of the FJ-4 precluded the use of the Douglas store.)
Attempts were made to increase the vertical separation between the tanker and the receiver with booms. The A3D was evaluated with one. It proved unsatisfactory.
External stores with this feature were also developed. This one being considered by the Air Force, here hung on an F-84F, was evaluated by NATC in 1958, only a year or so after the Douglas buddy pod was introduced in the fleet.
NATC also hung the Beech pod under an F4H, presumably to evaluate it at higher speeds than achievable by the A-26, with the following picture prompting Kim's question.
However, the Air Force did introduce a similar arrangement in order to provide drogue-refueling capability from its boom-equipped tankers. As originally implemented on the KC-135, it was referred to, not fondly, as the Iron Maiden. For an illustration and excellent firsthand description of refueling from it, I highly recommend that you read this: http://www.neptunuslex.com/2005/08/13/rhythms-part-xviii/
*The A3J-1 itself served briefly as a tanker, notably on its deployment on Independence.