Well I followed the suggestion of reinstalling URSP from the get-go, using new pages and going through the whole process again. When I again had error messages upon attempting to connect to my database, I finally realized my error: I had never set up a "regular" user in mysqladmin that matched the user set up by my server. Being so new to mysqladmin, I had been doing everything using the root user...once I set up this regular user (gbergan) which matches what is on my server, all things connect. Am quite red-faced to admit that, but I'm sure there is someone out there who might do the same. I guess URSP assumes you have already done this, so their documentation does not address this. Hence, my connection issues appear to be fixed.
One new issue has arisen: after uploading all pages and attempting to do a registration, I did get the registration email and clicked on the verification link. I verified the email address and was sent to the Log In page. After attempting to Log In, it says there is no user by that email address. So the registration process did not appear to populate the users table in my database. Do I need to alter anything in the URSP pages because I have added their "users" table to my existing database, rather than have it as a standalone database? If not, what else might cause this?