Help with S/N on S&W 38 spl
Hi - My father passed away in 1969 and I've had his S&W .38 spl nickel plated handgun with mother of pearl grips and lemon squeeze safety in storage until this weekend when i decided to take it out and see if it still shoots. After a good cleaning, i was really pleased with the response on the range. The s/n on the butt of the grip is a 4 digit number (79XX) and i've exhausted internet resources just trying to find out approximately when it was manufactured.
Before i invest the money with the letter of authenticity offered directly by S&W, can anyone give me some indication of the age of this weapon and whether the grips were an original offering?