The New Yorker (search) once again dominated the National Magazine Awards (search), clinching five prizes Wednesday including honors for reporting on the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal and atrocities in Sudan.

Martha Stewart Weddings (search) magazine also won an award for overall excellence, and Stewart herself appeared on stage at the awards ceremony as editorial director Darcy Miller accepted the prize.

Stewart recently returned to work at her media company after serving a five-month term in federal prison for lying to federal prosecutors about a stock sale.

In an ironic twist, The Atlantic Monthly captured the fiction award just a week after word came out that the venerable magazine, which has published Mark Twain and Ernest Hemingway in the past, would no longer carry fiction as a regular feature. The magazine will still produce an annual fiction issue in August.

But it was The New Yorker, part of S.I. Newhouse Jr.'s Conde Nast magazine group, that again grabbed the spotlight at the annual awards, which are administered by the American Society of Magazine Editors and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. The awards were announced in Manhattan on Wednesday.

The New Yorker has now won 44 of the awards, the most of any magazine since the awards were established in 1966. The next most decorated magazine is The Atlantic Monthly, with 19 awards and Esquire with 16.

Esquire won the feature writing award this year for a story by Chris Jones on two astronauts who got stranded on the International Space Station following the Columbia space shuttle disaster.

The New Yorker won the public interest category for a series of three articles by Seymour Hersh on the now infamous Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal in Iraq. It also won the reporting prize for an article by Samantha Power on Sudan; profile writing for an article by Ian Parker about a kidney donor; reviews and criticism for three reviews by Adam Gopnik; and it also won the overall excellence award for its circulation category.

Other winners for overall excellence included Glamour in the over 2 million circulation category; Wired in the 500,000 to 1 million category; Martha Stewart Weddings in the 250,000 to 500,000 category; Dwell, a brainy architecture and interiors magazine, in the 100,000 to 250,000 category; and Print, a graphic design magazine, for under 100,000 circulation.

Dwell, which is based in San Francisco, was among the first-time winners, along with BabyTalk, which won the personal service award for an article on breastfeeding.

Martha Stewart Weddings also won its first award, as did Kids: Fun Stuff to Do Together, which won for design; and Style.com, the site for W and Vogue, which won for general excellence online.

Newsweek, another longtime winner with a total of 11 laurels, took the award for a single-topic issue for its special issue on the presidential election, which featured a 50,000-word main article on the back story of the Bush campaign effort. The issue was produced by a separate team of editors and reporters and closed on the day after the election.

National Geographic won the essay award for "Was Darwin Wrong?" written by David Quammen, an examination of the scientific case for Darwin's theory of evolution. The National Journal's Jonathan Rausch won the prize for columns and commentary for a series of political columns.

Nearly all of the winning magazines are privately held: The New Yorker, Glamour, Wired, and Gourmet are all part of Conde Nast Publications, a division of Advance Publications Inc., and Esquire is held by Hearst Magazines, a division of Hearst Corp.

Martha Stewart's magazines are held by her publicly traded company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc.; and Time Inc., the publishing arm of Time Warner Inc., owns Time, which won for photo essay; Sports Illustrated, which won for leisure interests; and Popular Science, which won for a regularly published magazine section. The Washington Post Co. owns Newsweek.