I think I have found a sort-of solution. I installed the old, failing hard drive along side the new HD and am able to access the original files. It's VERY slow going to copy them to the new HD, but, at least as long as the old hard drive holds out, I'll be able to retrieve them all.
I DID back them up, when the drive started acting wonky .. they're burned to a DVD. However, they were somehow corrupted in the process.
Wish me luck in getting them all before the thing dies altogether!
Thanks anyway. However, I'm still open to any suggestions anyone might have . . . .