He was the son of William Bartlett and Elizabeth Holmes. He married Harriet Whitehorne and had eight children: William Chambers; Elizabeth Whitehorne; Harriett; Charles Gradiot, Neva; Samuel; Edward Courtney; Frederick Eugene.
He attended the USMA, West Point, NY where he became assistant professor of mathematics, and a full professor of natural and experimental philosophy in 1836. He received honorary degrees from Princeton and Geneva college. He was the author of many publications including Acoustics and Optics (1852-59); Analytical Mathematics (1853-59); and Spherical Astronomy (1855-58), and a series of books for West Point. AMW was close friends with his wife.
Johnson, Rossiter (ed.), The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, 10 vols., Boston, 1904, vol. 1.