1: I think that parsing the HTML of the old forum will be a lot harder than you think. There are a lot of issues to dealing with it. I also think that integrating it into the new forum is going to be very difficult, without, say, wiping out user accounts. Doing that also puts the "historical context" at the far back of the regular site, which is "fine" (maybe even "ideal") but I think I like it better the way it's presented now.
My idea of databasing the information there was less about integration with the rest of the site, and more about having the data in an alternative format, that would make doing something with it easier in the future.