From The Story of Dartmouth, by John P. Martin:
“The first move towards procuring women’s suffrage in Nova Scotia was taken by the Town of Dartmouth in 1886 when they got an Act through the Provincial Legislature extending to female ratepayers the right to vote at municipal elections.
It was effective the following year. Our 1873 Act of Incorporation stated that the privilege of voting was granted to “every male ratepayer.” In other words, widows, and spinsters owning property within the Town had no voice in the election of the Town Council. Evidently, it was then an unheard of thing for women to be associated with polling booths.
In thus extending the franchise to females, Dartmouth led all other Nova Scotia towns and even the capital City of Halifax.”
Dartmouth Annual Report, 1886: http://legacycontent.halifax.ca/archives/DartAnnReps/documents/101-1m-1886.pdf