Faces wrought with disappointment, empty stockings, cupboards devoid of the ingredients for making the usual holiday fare and a sparsely decorated home were constant reminders of the daily strife during a time of struggle that was threatening to rip apart the nation.

The Christmas Canceled: A Special Civil War Holiday Experience depicts the adversity faced by plantation owners and slaves as they came to terms with the rationing and less than ideal conditions that were routine during one of the darkest times. The event will be held Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m. at historic Redcliffe Plantation in Beech Island.

Employees and volunteers will participate in vignettes, reading from letters of those who recorded their thoughts during the years 1861 to 1864 and have been turned into scripts.

The program itself will include a tour through the decorated historic mansion and modest slave quarters and will feature live music, dramatic readings and games in a safe, fun and family-oriented environment, said Elizabeth Laney, Redcliffe Plantation park interpreter.

Re-enactor Kitty Wilson-Evans will reprise her role as Kessie, and will be stationed in the slave quarters providing authenticity to a historically important time.

The Midland Valley High School Honor Choir will perform classic Christmas carols. Visitors to Redcliffe will also have an opportunity to learn the Virginia Reel, a popular dance during that time period. Those who would like to participate need to call in advance; the dance instruction will take place at 4:45 p.m.

Redcliffe Plantation is located at 181 Redcliffe Road, Beech Island.

The cost of admission is $10 for adults, $8.50 for South Carolina senior residents and ages 6-16. There is no admission charge for those five and under.

For more information, call 827-1473.

What: Christmas Canceled

When: Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m.

Where: Redcliffe Plantation, 181 Redcliffe Road, Beech Island

Cost: $10 for adults, $8.50 for S.C. seniors and those ages 6 to 16

For more information: Call 827-1473