Chuck, honestly, given all the iterations of Firefox through the years, I have no idea what it would even mean to support "the original status bar". I write this while laughing.
I can say this: I have an extension called LinkmanFox, which, by default, puts a slew of icons into that right-hand corner spot. The code for this was in the extension's XML file. But the extension also provides a set of toolbar buttons, which appear by default in the Customize corral, ready to be dragged into operation. Visually, the icons were the same, as far as I am aware; they were just made available using two different methods.
With the author's help, I was able to comment out the lines in the XUL file that put the default icons into the status bar. Then I dragged the toolbar icons where I wanted them. Worked out fine, albeit with a bit of back and forth at first.
Does such an approach ring any bells on your end?