Could someone give me a brief history lesson about when page excerpts were removed from WP and the reasoning behind it? I recently upgraded a site that was on an old version of WP which uses page excerpts extensively. If I edit a page in any of the newer versions (2.2, 2.3) not only is there no textarea to edit excerpts but WP completely deletes any existing excerpt when the page is saved.
Maybe there is a very logical reason for WP to take away this feature and if so would someone please enlighten me? Other than using a plugin or going directly into the database to edit page excerpts does anyone know of any way to hack the core files to add back this useful feature? I tried adding the optional excerpts textarea to the edit pages form but it still deletes the existing excerpt when the edit form loads. It seems inane to have to use a plugin for this when it can easily be managed from the edit page form with one simple textarea.