Pierce County is a county in the U.S. state of Washington. As of the 2010 Census, the population was 795,225, making it the second-most populous county in Washington behind King County. The county seat and largest city is Tacoma. Formed out of Thurston County on December 22, 1852, by the legislature of Oregon Territory, it was named for U.S. President Franklin Pierce. Pierce County is included in the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA Metropolitan Statistical Area.