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Breakfast at The Heck's © Jennie Avila

Guitar and Vocal - Jennie Avila · Violin - Jay Ansill · Upright Bass - Ralph Gordon

The Heck brothers are favorite local legends of Boonsboro, MD. Brother John was in the Union army and Jake was a Confederate. After the Battle of South Mountain it occurred to each of them to sneak home to their mother's kitchen for breakfast. They converged accidentally and shared a meal before returning to fight on opposites sides. Their little sister, Sally, retold the story to her family and neighbors who passed the story down through generations. And so the tale is told from Sally's perspective. The Heck house still stands in Boonsborough, MD.

Chorus: It was breakfast at the Heck's, eggs on the griddle
Rebs and Yankees close enough to spit while
Boonsboro's hot with mamma and me cookin' in the middle

Comin' down South Mountain after the fight
Jake came first in the middle of the night
He was wearin' the Rebel gray
His troops withdrew to Sharpsburg,
But to see me and mamma for just one night, he would stay

In the mornin' mamma said "The Yanks are marchin' into town, son...
We hate to see you eat and run
But Boonsboro's sidin' with the north
And somebody's knockin' knockin' knockin'
Sally, go see who's knockin', knockin' at the door."


When the door flew open, what could we do?
It was brother John wearin' Union blue
Mamma said, "Give thanks once more.
Here's hot biscuits, hang up your hat,
Pass the salt and leave your differences outside our door."

Each one had a gun and a sword to wield
But a family's love is a stronger shield
John returned to the Yanks well fed
Jake slipped back through the town and the Yanks and the fields
Back to the Rebs

Well I was there, I'm Sally Heck their sister
I'll never forget that mornin' mister
Wait! It gets better yet
Believe it or not
We all survived the Civil War
And the ceasefire breakfast, breakfast


Breakfast at the Heck's!