In cases like these, a photograph or two would be a huge help.
Guns with owls' heads are not by S&W, but rather by Iver Johnson, and are of lesser quality.
You seem to have a real Smith & Wesson pistol. It is probably in .38 S&W, which is a shorter, and less powerful, cartridge than the modern .38 Special.
OK, it's a top-break gun. But with a side latch? (This is why we need a photo or two.)
I don't know of any S&W top-break pistol with a side latch. The ones I've seen have latches at the top-rear of the frame, near the hammer.
Pictures! We need pictures!
(Upload the pictures to Photobucket, and then copy-and-paste the Photobucket-supplied links to your posts here.)