Eerste River was a Railway Station of the Cape Town, Wellington and Docks Railway Co Ltd, and was probably established as a Village after 13 February 1862 when the Railway Line from Cape Town reached Eerste River. It was acquired by the Cape Government on 1 January 1873. The Village of Eerste Rivier is the site of the tomb of Sheik Yussuf of Bantam, a man of great piety and culture who was exiled to the Cape in 1693 by the Dutch administration of the East Indies. He is credited with the introduction of the Islamic faith to South Africa, and his tomb is considered to be the most important shrine in the Holy Circle of Islam, which encloses the Cape Peninsula. In March 1862 Mrs Ross, an English visitor to the Cape, described Eerste Rivier as "A very pretty and wealthy little Village on the high road to the wool districts". It was located at an important road junction between Cape Town, Bellville, Stellenbosch and Somerset West.