Does the gun display the actual intertwined "S&W" trademark on the sideplate or the grips? Many 19th-century top-break revolvers from a variety of other gunmakers were built to use S&W cartridges
, but the caliber marking on the barrel often misleads modern-day owners who know little about older revolvers. In fact, some makers would deliberately exaggerate the size of the caliber marking to trick buyers into believing they were purchasing a genuine S&W.
If it is a genuine S&W... does it have a visible hammer? If so, is it single-action, i.e. must be hand-cocked, or double-action, i.e. the trigger both lifts and
drops the hammer?
TWO IMPORTANT WARNINGS:
Make sure you verify that the gun is unloaded and pointed in a safe direction before attempting to cock the hammer or pull the trigger!
If you intend to shoot it, read my warning statement in the following link: