Origin of "Go pound salt"

Posted by Teresa DeSantis on December 09, 2001

What is the origin and the meaning of "go pound salt?"
I've only heard this used by one person, a gentleman who works for the county, in his reference to those people who do not pay their land taxes. If the people become delinquent in their taxes and the county has attempted contact, after two full years, "We tell them to go pound salt," and the county then repossses the land.
Why salt? Why pound? Who are the salt pounders? Does one pound one's own salt? Why?