William was a thirty four year old Labourer at Myall Creek, Delungra when he enlisted at Inverell in January 1916. His enlistment papers record his birthplace as Manferry, Queensland and that his father was AJ Bartlett of Maryborough. He joined the Second Contingent of The Kurrajongs who left Inverell together on 29 February 1916.
He became a member of the 33rd Battalion, which trained at Armidale and Rutherford prior to leaving Australia on HMAT Marathon in May 1916. After nine weeks at sea the battalion arrived in England where further training took place at Salisbury Plain. In September William was transferred to the 53rd Battalion and sent to France. Early in January 1917 he attended a week long musketry school and was then detached for Brigade mining duties. By March he had rejoined his unit. Two months later he was wounded in action and required medical attention before returning to his unit again. William was wounded a second time in September 1918 and invalided back to England where he was admitted to Bath War Hospital with a gunshot wound to his leg.
Private Bartlett returned to Australia in January 1919 and was discharged in July. By 1951 he was living at Bingara NSW. His name is recorded on the new Honour Roll on the Memorial Gates at Anzac Park, Delungra.