Kits involving the Olympia, for example, seem to revolve around her restoration in the late-50'; hence the interest. The pedestrian examples you referred to...at least the more modern ships such as the Decaturs, the large deck carriers and so forth, reflected the inventory of the Navy coming on line. Revell employees explicitly stated that provenance in their comments. They would also come to admit that they should have moved out of box scale and gone for constant scale subjects a lot sooner than they ever did.
While on that theme the scale of 1/720th was chosen by Lloyd Jones, apparently, since it was a multiple of 1/72nd, even though it was known that a large crop of 1/700th kits were coming out of Japan at that time.
Makes you wonder where we'd be if Revell had tried to do much of the wartime USN in 1/700th. And whether new moldings would subsequently replace those old pioneers, had they ever been approached.