In 1652, the Dutchman Jan van Riebeeck, employee of the Dutch East India Company, was sent to the South African cape to establish a way station for ships traveling from Europe to the Dutch East Indies. He founded Cape Town, the first permanent European settlement on South African soil. In the following decades Dutch Calvinists, German colonists and from 1689 also French Huguenot refugees settled in and around Cape Town. At the beginning of the 19th century Great Britain conquered the Cape Colony and enacted comprehensive legal and political reforms. English was declared as official language, and British law was introduced. The monies circulating within the Cape Colony – Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Indian gold and silver coins – were replaced by British coins. In 1825, the British currency was made official legal tender.