Pounding the preacher was a common event in nineteenth century Texas. In some locales it was done up until the second world war. You may even know of someplace it still happens today.
This wasn't abuse, but a way of welcoming a new preacher and making sure his larder was full.
On the day appointed, each member of the congregation would arrive at the preacher's door with a pound of something: coffee, sugar, flour, butter, honey, what have you. Of course, a pound wasn't always a pound. Someone might give a ham, a bushel of corn or a jug of molasses. Then they would spend the evening visiting with the new preacher, getting to know him and his family.
We can thank the First Amendment for this tradition. "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..." You see, before the American Revolution, Congregationalist and Anglican churches were publicly funded and the "preacher" thus provided for.
Needless to say, people who were not Congregationalists or Anglicans didn't care for that. So after independence, the various states designed schemes where religious taxes were laid on all citizens, each of whom could designate which church got his share.
The ratification of the US Constitution in 1787 put an end those ideas. After that, if a congregation wanted a church and a preacher, it had to build one and provide for the other.
So cometh the pounding.
Some ministers had contracts stating that in addition to their salaries, they would be pounded once a year. For small congregations, where the preacher was likely to have another livelihood, a yearly pounding might be given as a token of thanks.
In 1878, a story appeared in the Frontier Times at Fort Griffin. A congregation had welcomed it's new preacher with a pounding. Instead of the mix of staples you would expect, a plurality contributed cold biscuits.
During the night, the preacher considered the situation and concluded his calling lay elsewhere. The next morning he was gone...but those biscuits were neatly stacked on the parsonage fence posts.
Man does not live by bread alone.