Berdyansk was often called the “second Odessa.” This label projected the hope that the settlement, situated on the coast of the Sea of Azov, could transform itself into a powerful port city in the south of the Russian Empire, too. Berdyansk’s commercial relationships with “Europe” were indeed considerable and provided a continuous influx of foreigners in the course of the nineteenth century. These were predominantly merchants but also included a colony of German Mennonites, administrators from other corners of the Russian Empire and quite a number of foreign consuls. Eager to modernize itself, the city of Berdyansk searched intensely for “best practices.” This included the fields of urban planning (with particular attention to the port), education and agriculture, but also industry and technology. One intriguing example is analyzed in detail: the large reaper factory in Berdyansk established by the British entrepreneur John Edward Greaves in the late nineteenth century. The chapter shows the mixed success in experimenting with imported models in the very particular social, political, and geographical setting of Berdyansk (its “frontier” status). It provides a concrete example that helps to question the supposed “unity” of modernity and modernization viewed through the prism of a supposedly “peripheral” port city.