Janine, sounds like you (or somebody...) is going to have to get down
and dirty digging through the AOLserver 4.0.x character set
implementation. I'd thought
that stuff was forward ported
more or less verbatim from Rob Mayoff's
3.3+ad13 character encoding work
but it looks like some sort of incompatibility or difference in
default settings crept in.
Who did the 4.0.x character set work, or who else really understands
its guts, either the 4.0.x or the 3.3+ad13 version? Most rapid fix
might be to get those folks involved, if possible...