I don’t have a manual car at the moment but when I do, I do. I got in the habit because my dad hammered it into me in about 1981 when learning to drive. Depressing the clutch was easier than listening to him whining about his starter motor.
I also remember that when it was very cold half the cars in the street wouldn’t start, so I suppose you did anything that would help.
People used to take the battery indoors overnight and reconnect it in the morning.
When did manufacturers stop supplying starting handles?